Airbus has delivered the first A350 XWB to launch customer Qatar Airways.
Delivery of the first customer Airbus A350-900 to Qatar Airways took place nine days later than the December 13 date originally announced by Qatar Airways on December 4.
However, the airline and the manufacturer have declined to explain the reason for the last-minute decision to delay delivery for a few days.
“In the seven years since we first placed our order for this new aircraft type at the Paris Air Show, investing in a partnership program with Airbus, there has been significant growth in the airline industry,” said Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways Group chief executive, at the delivery ceremony in Toulouse.
Qatar Airways already operates Airbus A380 and A330 widebodies, as well as Airbus A320-family single-aisle jets.
Its first Airbus A350 XWB delivery makes the carrier the world’s first airline to operate each member of Airbus’ current widebody family.
The fuselage and wings of the mid-size, long-range A350 XWB are largely made from carbon fiber and the aircraft is more than 50 per cent made of carbon fiber overall.
At the end of November 2014, firm orders for the A350 XWB family totaled 778 aircraft, with 41 customers ordering the aircraft.