United Airlines will add 35 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft to its future fleet.
A new agreement between United Airlines and Airbus specifies conversion of the U.S. carrier’s previous order for 25 A350-900s to the Airbus A350-1000 model plus an additional order for 10 more A350-1000 aircraft.
Airbus and United made the announcement on June 20 at the Paris Air Show 2013.
The Airbus A350-1000 is the largest version of the A350 XWB (Xtra Wide-Body) family and typically seats 350 passengers in a three-class layout. The aircraft is capable of flying 8,400 nautical miles (15,557 kilometers) non-stop and will be operated by United Airlines on higher-density routes, including non-stop flights between the United States and the Asia/Pacific region.
United Airlines’ A350-1000s will be powered by two Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, each delivering 97,000lb of thrust – the most powerful engines ever developed for an Airbus aircraft.
“We look forward to taking delivery of the A350-1000,” says Jeff Smisek, United’s chairman, president and CEO. “This is a modern, fuel-efficient and advanced-technology aircraft that our customers and co-workers will enjoy flying. It will be a great addition to our fleet and will allow us to meet demand on larger, long-haul markets in our world-leading network.”
“Less than a week after the success of the A350 XWB’s first flight, we see that demand for the new aircraft continues to grow, especially for the larger -1000 model,” says Fabrice Bregier, Airbus president and chief executive officer. “Airbus is proud to have United Airlines on board the exciting A350 program in such a significant way.”
The Airbus A350 XWB is an all-new mid-size long range widebody family featuring three versions and seating from 270 to 350 passengers in typical three-class layouts. According to Airbus, the aircraft will use 25 per cent less fuel than existing aircraft in the same size category and provide an equivalent reduction in CO2 emissions.
The first A350 XWB began an extensive flight-test program on Friday, June 14. Entry into commercial service of the first customer aircraft is scheduled for the second half of 2014.
To date, Airbus has recorded firm orders for 678 A350 XWBs from 34 customers worldwide.