European aircraft maker Airbus bagged a record number of orders for new commercial jets last year, with a kitty of 1,419 orders valued at $140 billion.
Airbus left its Chicago, US-based rival Boeing Co far behind surpassing its total of 805 aircraft in 2011 and its previous record of 1,413 net orders in 2007.
The big hit for Airbus with 1,226 bookings proved to be the upcoming A320neo, which is touted as a new fuel-sipping version of its best-selling jet, the A320. Airbus has plans for making the first delivery of the aircraft in 2015.
According to Airbus, it delivered a total of 534 aircraft.
The company has plans for delivering 570 aircraft in 2012 but expects commercial orders to be down over 50 per cent to between 600 and 650.
The order drop notwithstanding, Airbus is aiming high on production with a targeted 42 aircraft a month output in 2012 of the single-aisle A320. Additionally, it is also aiming at a monthly goal of 9.5 wide-body twin-engine A330s and produce three of its double-decker A380 super jumbo jets each month.
The production increase would be good news for Airbus suppliers in the US, more than 100 of which are based in California. For the last three years, the Toulouse, France-based company has increased its US spending to $10 billion.