Certification from the US authorities (FAA) is also expected soon, Airbus said in a statement. Furthermore, and in the near future, the smaller A330-200 model will follow the -300, benefiting from the 242-tonne MTOW capability. To date 11 customers have already selected A330s with the 242-tonne MTOW capability.
The new A330 version offers various aerodynamic refinements and increased fuel capacity, extending the aircraft’s range of up to 500 nautical miles while carrying a greater payload. Fuel consumption is reduced by up to 2%; today’s A330 operational reliability is 99.4%.
The 242-tonne MTOW A330-300 is capable of flying missions of up to 15 hours and allow operators to fly directly between Europe and Southeast Asia. It could be used for more than 90 percent of typical routes from London airports.
The initial certified A330-300 242-tonne MTOW aircraft is powered by CF6-80E1 engines; certification with the other engine types – the PW4000 and Trent 700 – will follow.
Notably, the 242-tonne MTOW A330’s structure is also the basis for development of the forthcoming A330neo.
Delta Air Lines is the launch customer of the new variant, produced by European manufacturer Airbus.
The A330 variant entered the final assembly line in November and completed its maiden flight in January.
(Kurt Hofmann - ATWOnline News)