Boeing has completed assembly on the first 787-9, the company announced on Saturday. The second member of the Dreamliner family rolled out of Boeing’s Everett, Washington, widebody plant to the flight line, where teams have begun preparing it to fly by the end of the summer.
Twenty feet longer than the 787-8, the 787-9 generally carries some 40 more passengers, depending on seating configurations, and operates to a range of 8,500 nautical miles—300 nm farther than its smaller sibling. Boeing has started final assembly of the second and third airplanes, both of which will also participate in the flight-test program. Schedules call for the first production example to go to launch customer Air New Zealand in mid-2014.