The first Airbus A350-900 for Cathay Pacific Airways has completed its maiden flight.
Cathay Pacific Airways’ first A350 performed its first flight on March 24, taking off from Toulouse Blagnac Airport and later landing back at the same airport, where Airbus’ widebody final-assembly lines are located.
The aircraft will now enter the final phase of production including cabin completion, further ground checks and test flights before being prepared for delivery to Cathay Pacific in the second quarter of the year.
It is the first of 48 A350 XWBs ordered by the Hong King-based airline.
Cathay Pacific’s A350 XWB fleet will include 22 A350-900s and 26 of the larger A350-1000s, for operation on long- and medium-haul services.
Firm orders from carriers in the Asia-Pacific region for the A350 XWB family to date total 241 aircraft, more than a third of total sales for the A350 XWB.
The A350 XWB has a new aerodynamic design, a carbon fiber fuselage and wings, and Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines.