Launch customer Qatar Airways released photos of the first Airbus A350-900 it expects to receive this year, freshly painted at the manufacturer’s assembly plant in Toulouse, France. The airline has ordered 80 of the new widebodies: 43 A350-900s and 37 -1000s.
On August 13, Airbus flight test aircraft MSN 005 completed a series of “route proving trials” that took in 14 cities over 20 days. The final series of trials was required for the aircraft’s type certification by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which Airbus expects to obtain in the third quarter.
Qatar Airways and Airbus flight crews flew the aircraft from Doha to Perth, Moscow and Helsinki. EASA pilots participated in the flight trials and flew the aircraft on two legs of the journey.
At the Farnborough Airshow in July, Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker said a 50-airplane firm order the carrier placed for the new Boeing 777-9X would not alter its commitment for A350-1000s.