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I thought I read that they were basically selling out whatever of those MacBook Pros they had left… 

Back in March there was a flurry of articles making that claim, all tracing back to a report in DigiTimes claiming that (based on their supply-chain sources) Apple was planning to discontinue this model in the 2nd half of 2014.

DigiTimes has a terrible record on Apple rumors. Still, given that this model hasn't been updates since 2012, you don't need to be psychic to see that it's not long for this world.

But they clearly haven't discontinued it yet. The fact that CTO (customized to order) configurations are still offered shows the production line is still running.

My guess is that they'll keep selling it as long as demand keeps up.

Also, how does the older architecture of the MacBook Pro affect the overall speed in the above comparisons?

The older model holds up quite well in benchmarks:

MBP 2012 MBA 2014
2.5 GHz 1.7 GHz
-------- --------
Geekbench 2 32 6690 7097
Geekbench 2 64 7323 8145
Geekbench 3 SC 32 2530 2895
Geekbench 3 MC 32 5106 5530
Geekbench 3 SC 64 2781 3129
Geekbench 3 MC 64 5689 6091

For an extra $150, I can get a CTO configuration of the 2012 model with a 2.9 GHz i7 that easily beats the MBA 2014.

Then mine would be $38 more, and it would still have significantly better specs in all regards except size and weight.
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