Airbus' A330-200F freighter aircraft was highlighted at this year's Cargo Facts symposium as the modern, eco-efficient solution to the current challenges facing the air freight industry.
Jonathan Lesieur, Airbus freighter marketing, addressed buyersâ€š sellers and financiers representing the freight and passenger aircraft markets at the symposium, held last month in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A., underscoring the A330-200F's "green" advantages.
Among Lesieur's key messages is that the launch of the A330-200F - scheduled to make its first flight in November - is well timed with the freighter market's rebound. As cargo volumes begin to recover from the recession, carriers place extra importance on cost and eco-efficiency when selecting aircraft.
Airbus' new freighter benefits from the excellent economics and fly-by-wire technology of the popular A330-200 airliner. As the only modern mid-size, long-haul freighter on the market today, the A330-200F maximises profitabilityâ€š thanks to improved fleet use optimisation and overall lower risk. Its range and payload capabilities also enable operators to grow their business by opening up new cargo routes or extending existing ones they currently operate.
In addition, the fuel burn of new-generation freighters such as the A330-200F is 35 per cent lower than the DC-10 class of aircraft at equivalent payload and weight.
Currently, there are 67 firm orders from nine customers for the new Airbus freighter - which made a strong impression on delegates at its latest programme performance review. Certification is expected during spring 2010, with the initial delivery to follow in the summer.