We submitted what we think is a very competitive price proposal, EADS North America Chairman Ralph Crosby, who was speaking from Washington, D.C., told a briefing for reporters.
Asked how much the price was lowered, he said: Just enough to win.
The $35 billion contract for tankers that refuel other planes in flight is expected to be awarded in a month or so.
The high-stakes contract has fanned transatlantic tensions and jockeying among U.S. lawmakers eager to bring jobs to their states.
EADS said its tanker, which is based on an A330 widebody plane built by its Airbus subsidiary, would be assembled along with commercial freighter aircraft at a new plant to be built in Mobile, Alabama, which sits on the U.S. Gulf Coast. Crosby said the company would break ground on the Mobile facility shortly after the award was announced should EADS win.
Boeing's tanker offer is based on its 767 jetliner. Washington state and Kansas would benefit if Boeing wins since the company would build its tankers and make final upgrades to them in those areas.
Crosby said EADS has commissioned an independent study on jobs tied to the tanker and would release news on that soon. EADS has said in the past that its tanker would support at least 48,000 U.S. jobs.
Having two independent manufacturers of large commercial aircraft in the United States adds benefits beyond the numbers of jobs specifically, Crosby said.
(Reporting by Karen Jacobs, editing by Dave Zimmerman)