Qatar Airways takes delivery of its first A350 XWB

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore December 22, 2014 20:57

Qatar Airways takes delivery of its first A350 XWB

Qatar Airways has taken delivery of the first A350 XWB to Qatar Airways, of which the airline is the global launch customer.

In attendance at the press conference and delivery ceremony in Toulouse were Fabrice Bregier, President and Chief Executive Officer at Airbus and Tony Wood, President – Aerospace from Rolls Royce, and Qatar’s Ambassador to France, His Excellency Sheikh Mishaal bin Hamad Al-Thani, witnessing the arrival of the airline’s first A350 XWB aircraft. Speaking at the press conference, Mr. Al Baker explained about Qatar Airways’ rapid expansion plans, boosted by the arrival of this latest aircraft type.

Mr. Akbar Al Baker remarked: “Today marks a momentous occasion in the history of our airline. Not only are we welcoming a new aircraft type into the Qatar Airways fleet, but as global launch customer for the A350 XWB, we are receiving the newest and most modern aircraft that the world will see for at least another decade.

“With our significant order as launch customer for 80 of this aircraft type, it has enabled Airbus to create an aircraft that not only considers every aspect of passenger comfort, but also features the cutting-edge light-weight carbon composite design, which in turn allows fuel consumption and noise to be reduced, along with many other leading features.

“I am confident that with our passenger insight, the aircraft that has today been welcomed into our fleet will be the footprint for all future aircraft design, both with regard to technological advancements and the passenger journey itself.”

Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO said: “Handing over the first A350 XWB represents a significant step in Airbus and aviation history. The A350 XWB becomes the most modern aircraft in service, developed with our excellence established over 45 years in meeting our customers’ needs. The A350 XWB is the latest Airbus aircraft to join the skies, revolutionising our industry and redefining the way people fly.” He added: “It is with tremendous pride that we are delivering our first A350 XWB today to our launch customer, Qatar Airways. It’s a perfect match, to be handing over the first of an all-new, world-class aircraft to a leading, world-class airline.”

The first commercial service will be deployed on the Doha-Frankfurt route in January 2015.

The A350 XWB will comprise a two-class configuration with 36 Business Class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, featuring 80” fully flat beds and 17” HD in-flight entertainment screens. Economy Class will comprise of 247 seats, each 18-inches wide in a 3-3-3 configuration, with up to a 32-inch pitch. Each individual seat will feature a 10.6” in-flight entertainment screen, and more space at shoulder level for passengers in window seats, thanks to a vertical side wall panel design.

Over 70 per cent of the A350 XWB’s weight-efficient airframe is made from advanced materials combining composites (53 percent), titanium and advanced aluminium alloys. The aircraft’s innovative all-new carbon fibre reinforced plastic fuselage results in lower fuel burn as well as easier maintenance.

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore December 22, 2014 20:57