It’s a sad day for aviation enthusiasts as the last example of Airbus A380 ever made was. finally delivered to Emirates, marking the end of the road for the superjumbo. The aircraft known to Airbus as MSN 272 arrived in London on Thursday and will soon join Emirates’ fleet to commence its commercial service. Emirates President Tim Clark said, “for Emirates, it gave us the opportunity to redefine the travel experience. … The A380 will remain Emirates’ flagship product for the coming years, and a vital pillar of our network plans.” Emirates has been the biggest operator of the A380 with the newest aircraft joining in as the 123rd A380 delivered by Airbus, which accounts for almost half of all the superjumbos produced over the last 15 years.

Etihad’s first class suites onboard their A380’s.

The double-decker Airbus A380 was introduced as an aircraft to challenge the dominance of the Boeing 747. Measuring 238 feet long and with a wingspan of 262 feet, the A380 became the biggest commercial jet in the world. The behemoth with four engines has a payload capacity of roughly 634 tons and was offered to customers with seating for up to 853 passengers.

Emirates offers an onboard shower for its first class passengers flying their A380.

However, many airline companies used its expansive interior to offer an unmatched travel experience for well-heeled flyers. Etihad’s first-class suite with a separate living area and bedroom is an example of what was possible with so much space.

Singapore Airlines suite class offers flatbeds.

However, the Airbus A380 luck ran out sooner than anyone expected. Unlike most other aircraft models that stay in production for a considerably long time, the A380’s production line lasted only for 15 years. Its demise could be attributed to the arrival of smaller and more efficient aircraft like the A350 and the Boeing 777. The A380 wasn’t economically viable for airline companies to operate, which ultimately led to the drying up of the order books.

The Covid-19 pandemic made things much worse and only quickened the process. But as the world continues to come out of travel restrictions, many operators have started to bring back their existing A380 fleet into service. As a final goodbye, the last A380 flew over Germany drawing a massive heart during its pre-delivery flight.

[Via: The Drive]




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