Airbus sees possible future sales of 'hundreds' of 400M in U.S.

An Airbus A400M transport aircraft lands during the opening of the ILA Berlin Air Show in Selchow near Schoenefeld south of Berlin May 20, 2014. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Europe's Airbus AIR.PA said on Thursday that it sees the possibility of selling hundreds of its A400M military transport plane to the U.S. military in the medium to long term.

Barry Eccleston, president of Airbus Americas Inc, told the Reuters Aerospace and Defense Summit that the company was focused on securing additional orders for the UH-72 helicopter that it builds in Mississippi in the short term, but its “next big project” would be focused on marketing the A400M.

"There's this incredible airplane that can do just about everything," Eccleston said, noting that Airbus saw possible sales of the A400M to the U.S. Air Force and other military services to replace older C-130 transport planes built by Lockheed Martin Corp LMT.N and C-17s built by Boeing Co BA.N.

He said Airbus would launch a major marketing drive for the A400M in the United States after the airplane was introduced in France, Britain, Turkey and Germany.

“We want to let our customers show what the airplane can do,” Eccleston told the summit held at the Reuters office in Washington.

Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Leslie Adler