Airbus delivers the first A380 to Lufthansa

Lufthansa has taken delivery of the first of 15 Airbus A380s ordered, with three more to join the fleet in 2010. Lufthansa will deploy its new flagship aircraft on routes to Tokyo, Beijing and Johannesburg.

During the handover ceremony in Hamburg, Lufthansa unveiled its new First Class cabin with eight generous seats on the upper deck. The upper deck is also equipped with 98 Business seats while the spacious main deck hosts 420 Economy Class seats offering a unique feeling of comfort and space. Lufthansa’s A380s are powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines.

“With the A380 Lufthansa today receives its new flagship. The A380 is the most modern and environmentally friendly airliner today. It’s also exceptionally quiet, and that will make the A380 the preferred aircraft at metropolises such as London, New York, Tokyo and of course Frankfurt airport. While Lufthansa passengers will enjoy more space in all classes and the unique cabin comfort, the airline will profit from the unprecedented efficiency of the A380,” said Airbus President and CEO Tom Enders. “I thank Lufthansa for the excellent co-operation during the design and certification process of the A380.”

From the beginning of the A380 programme, Lufthansa and Airbus have worked closely on the aircraft design through to certification. Between 2005 and 2010 the A380 underwent several airport compatibility tests at Lufthansa’s home base in Frankfurt. In cabin safety evacuation tests, Lufthansa cabin crews successfully evacuated 873 people in just 78 seconds. Lufthansa was also a major partner during initial ground based ‘virtual’ flights and on the first real long-range route proving flights.

"Passengers can look forward to a very special flight experience on board the A380," Wolfgang Mayrhuber, Chairman and CEO of Deutsche Lufthansa said at the handover. "In cooperation with Airbus, we have developed many technical solutions regarding the cabin design and furnishings which are being given a world premiere in this aircraft. Our innovations in terms of cabin air, light systems, sound insulation and inflight entertainment make our A380 unique. Our pilots, technicians and service professionals have undergone intensive training and are thoroughly prepared for this new dimension in flying. They are all as excited about this aircraft as our passengers, who are now booking flights specifically with the A380.”

Lufthansa and Airbus have a long history of partnership. In 1976 Lufthansa took over the first Airbus A300B4. With 274 orders Lufthansa is today Airbus’ biggest airline customer. Nearly all Airbus family models are represented in the airline’s current Airbus fleet of over 180 aircraft.

The A380 has unmatched fuel efficiency, consuming less than three litres per
100 kilometres per passenger. Thanks to excellent aerodynamic performance, the A380 complies with today’s strictest noise limits, which makes it the quietest large aircraft flying today. The all new double deck aircraft generates only half as much noise on take-off and landing as the previous largest passenger aircraft. The A380 also provides vital extra passenger capacity without increasing the number of flights, and is therefore part of the solution for sustainable growth at congested airports.

The aircraft’s efficient performance and industry leading technology result in higher operational flexibility and outstanding operational economics. With a range of more than 15,000 km/8,300 nm and seat-mile costs 24 per cent lower than its closest competitor.

Lufthansa becomes the fifth airline to introduce the A380 into service. Today’s delivery marks the 28th Airbus A380 to be operating with the global route network of leading airlines. The current A380 fleet already connects 21 important international routes on five continents. 17 major international airports are already regular A380 destinations.

All in all, the A380 fleet has today achieved a total of more than 130,000 flight hours on over 14,000 commercial flights. More than 5 million passengers have had an opportunity to enjoy flying in an A380.

Airbus has received 202 firm orders for the A380 from 17 customers.

For additional information on Lufthansa’s first A380 delivery:

• See the special website,
• View the “best of” video clip, and
• Read the Headline News story.

Source: AIRBUS

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