Airbus Delivered 305 Planes in 2003, Beating Boeing

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That beat the European airplane manufacturer's own forecast of 300 and made it the market leader over Chicago-based Boeing for the first time.

The total barely topped Airbus' 303 deliveries in 2002. And the company says it expects "close to 300" in 2004 in a market that's likely to remain "soft."

Boeing earlier this month reported 281 aircraft deliveries in 2003 and is forecasting between 275 and 290 this year.