Your First Look at the Aircraft That Will Soon Operate the World’s Longest Flight
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The aircraft that will soon operate the world’s longest flight rolled out of Airbus’ paint shop in Toulouse, France, on Monday in its full livery. It’s the very first A350-900 ULR (Ultra Long-Range), which will be delivered to Singapore Airlines later this year.
With the capability of flying 9,700 nautical miles, the A350-900 ULR is the longest-range aircraft currently on the market. While that’s 1,600 nautical miles more than the standard A350-900, the two plane types aren’t all that different. The ULR uses a modified fuel system, which allows an increase in fuel capacity without the need for extra tanks.
Singapore Airlines has seven of the ULR variants on order and is so far the only customer of this specialized aircraft. It expects to take delivery of the first aircraft, registered 9V-SGA, and will to use it to relaunch the Singapore (SIN) to Newark (EWR) flight, which will become the longest nonstop in the world. Singapore will also launch the aircraft on its route between Los Angeles (LAX) and Singapore (SIN).
Possibly the most unique thing about these planes is that Singapore has chosen a special, no-economy-cabin configuration. The planes will have just 161 seats in total — 67 of them in business class and 94 in premium economy.
If you’re hoping to use miles to book a seat on the airline’s new flagship flight, we’ve been seeing a ton of award space available for premium-economy and business-class seats beginning on October 16, just a few days after launch. TPG will publish a report from the inaugural flight, so look for it later this year!
*Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that Singapore has announced it plans to launch the A350-900ULR on its LAX-SIN route.
Featured image courtesy of Airbus / R. Peli.
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