The 500th A350 passenger aircraft was delivered by European aircraft manufacturer Airbus, who also unveiled a new wide-body production standard.
Iberia, the national airline of Spain, recently received the 500th A350-900, according to a September 30, 2022 announcement from Airbus. The A350-900 and A350-1000 models now operate under a new Airbus production standard, which the firm claims have improved both the aircraft’s performance and passenger cabin.
“Compared to previous standards, it brings a weight reduction of up to 1.2 tonnes by optimizing systems and structures and increasing the use of advanced materials which already represent more than 70% of the aircraft,” Airbus wrote.
The A350’s Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTW) has been boosted by 3 tonnes, according to Airbus, so the aircraft can carry a heavier payload and still maintain its maximum range.
“It also positions the A350 platform ready for future trends including decarbonization solutions, a key driver for operators,” Airbus said. “With enhanced performance, 25% less fuel burn and CO2 emissions, and 50% less noise footprint compared to previous generation aircraft, the A350 family continuously attracts operators 8 years after its entry-into-service offering both high versatility – up to 9,700nm/18 000 km – and efficiency.”
In terms of cabin upgrades, the updated A350 has a bigger interior cabin, giving airlines the option to add more than 30 extra passenger seats in a typical 3-class configuration.
“When we designed the A350 and delivered the first one, we were extremely proud to have created a real clean sheet, state-of-the-art aircraft, delivering unmatched performance and economics. It offers outstanding space, comfort, and quietness to the passengers, and it contributes significantly to decarbonizing aviation,” Airbus executive vice president for programs and services Philippe Mhun said.
By the end of September 2022, Airbus estimates that it will have more than 400 A350s on order.