United weighing options on big jet purchase

11/20/2009 | Chicago Tribune (tiered subscription model)

United Airlines is considering two composite aircraft, the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350, for its first order in more than a decade, but the carrier denies a deal is imminent. "We are not working toward a specific time frame," says a company spokeswoman. "We are working toward getting the right deal for the company." United has said it will place a firm order for 25 jets, with options for up to 75 more. Both manufacturers are competing aggressively for the contract, though analysts say Airbus could have an advantage if the decision is based strictly on the planes' price tag.

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