Doha. Airbus delivered the first A350 XWB, the world’s latest generation widebody airliner, to launch customer Qatar Airways on 22nd December. The A350 XWB redefines the way people fly for the coming decades and opens up a new era in comfortable, efficient long-haul air travel when it enters service with Qatar Airways, renowned for leading the industry to new heights in service excellence.
The A350 XWB embodies the most advanced technologies and breakthrough innovations in aerodynamics, light-weight materials and aircraft systems. Powered by ultra-fuel-efficient and very quiet Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines and an extra-wide, bright and spacious cabin, the A350 XWB promises to be a firm favourite with travellers who will discover a whole new way of flying. Airlines will also benefit from unequalled levels of operating efficiency and cost effectiveness.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker, said, “Receiving the A350 XWB as global launch customer is a very proud moment for Qatar Airways, and after much anticipation, I am delighted that the day has come when we will welcome this latest generation aircraft into our rapidly expanding fleet.
“In the seven years since we first placed our order for this new aircraft type at the Paris Air Show, investing in a partnership programme with Airbus, there has been significant growth in the airline industry. I am confident that this increase in passenger numbers around the world will only increase further in the years to come, and delighted that Qatar Airways will be leading the way in the aviation sector in offering our passengers the opportunity to travel on board the most modern of airliners in the sky.”
John Rishton, Rolls-Royce, Chief Executive Officer said: “We are very proud to have worked with Qatar Airways and Airbus on the A350 XWB, using the latest technology to deliver new standards in customer service. This is a very important day for everyone at Rolls-Royce. It is the culmination of years of hard work and the start of a new chapter for our business.”
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 adds: “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 A350 XWB fits seamlessly alongside Qatar Airways’ growing fleet of A380s and A330s, making the carrier the world’s first airline to operate each member of Airbus’ market leading Widebody Family. Qatar Airways’ A350 XWBs, in combination with their A380s and A330s, will offer unprecedented levels of interoperability and comfort on the rapidly expanding Qatar Airways network of excellence.
The A350 XWB is the latest addition to the market-leading Airbus Widebody product line. Offering its customers a game-changing reduction in fuel-burn, the all-new mid-size long-range A350 XWB has carbon fibre fuselage and wings and sets new standards in terms of passenger comfort, operational efficiency and cost-effectiveness. At the end of November 2014, the A350 XWB had won 778 orders from 41 customers worldwide.