The first A380 for Lufthansa has been delivered, bringing the number of carriers with Airbus' next generation double-deck aircraft to five.
Lufthansa today became the latest airline to receive the A380, adding this 21st century flagship jetliner to one of the largest Airbus aircraft fleets operated worldwide.
The no. 1 A380 was provided to Lufthansa during a morning ceremony at Airbus’ Hamburg, Germany delivery centre.
In presenting the A380, President and Chief Executive Officer Thomas Enders lauded Lufthansa’s role in launching many of Airbus’ aircraft – beginning with the pioneering A300 in the early 1970s.
“Lufthansa has always been a very important and strong partner of Airbus in the development of our aircraft family,” Enders said. “With the same enthusiasm and technical professionalism, Lufthansa played a pivotal role in the A380 programme, especially in its certification – which included the participation of the airline’s crews in route proving flights and compatibility trials.”
Lufthansa has 15 A380s on order, which will join the airline’s more than 180 Airbus jetliners currently in service – ranging from single-aisle A319s, A320s and A321s to widebody A300s, A330s and A340s. The airline’s A380s are powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 900s, which are one of the two engines choices offered by Airbus on the aircraft.
During the coming weeks, Lufthansa’s initial A380 will make a number of stopovers at airports in Germany for pilot line training, followed by a 6 June trip to Johannesburg, South Africa with Germany’s team for the Football World Cup.
Lufthansa’s scheduled A380 operations will start on 11 June with three weekly Frankfurt-Tokyo flights, replacing Boeing 747-400 service. Following the delivery of its second A380, this route will be served daily by the 21st century flagship beginning in August.
Service subsequently will be expanded by Lufthansa to include Frankfurt-Beijing and Frankfurt-Johannesburg flights.
The airline’s A380 seating configuration includes eight completely new first class seats on the upper deck, along with 98 business class seats. Its main deck’s economy cabin accommodates 420 passengers with unprecedented comfort and space.
Wolfgang Mayrhuber, Deutsche Lufthansa’s Chairman and CEO, noted the excitement generated in advance of the airline’s A380’s introduction. “On behalf of the entire Lufthansa crew, I want thank Airbus and Rolls-Royce for your enormous achievements over the years – especially with the flagship A380. Great job…thank you, and keep going!”
The A380 delivered today was the 28th provided by Airbus to the growing list of international airline customers. A380s currently operated by Singapore Airlines, Qantas, Emirates and Air France have flown over five million passengers on more than 14,000 commercial flights.
To date, Airbus has received 202 firm orders for the A380 from 17 customers, which are to use the aircraft on a variety of services that include long-haul operations between major city destinations, inter-regional routes and low-cost/charter flights in high-density markets.
For additional information on Lufthansa’s first A380 delivery: