Airbus to end production of A380 superjumbo jet

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A British Airways Airbus A380 aircraft on the runway at London´s Heathrow Airport (Hannah McKay/PA)
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Airbus has announced it will end production of its flagship A380 superjumbo, potentially putting UK jobs at risk.

The firm said it had made the ‘painful’ decision after struggling to sell the world’s largest passenger jet and after Emirates chose to slash its A380 orderbook by around a quarter.

Due to the reduction and a lack of order backlog with other airlines, Airbus said it would end deliveries of the record-breaking plane in 2021 – just 14 years after it first entered commercial service.

A British Airways Airbus A380 aircraft on the runway at London´s Heathrow Airport (Hannah McKay/PA)

A British Airways Airbus A380 aircraft on the runway at London´s Heathrow Airport (Hannah McKay/PA)

Emirates is yet to take delivery of 14 of the double-decker aircraft – the wings, engines and landing gear for which are made in the UK.

Airbus said it would ‘start discussions with its social partners in the next few weeks regarding the 3,000 to 3,500 positions potentially impacted over the next three years’.

The BBC reported around 200 of those jobs are in Britain. The firm said an increase in production of its A320 model would offer ‘a significant number of internal mobility opportunities’.

Unions have expressed ‘bitter disappointment’. Unite, which represents workers at Airbus sites in Broughton, North Wales, and Filton, near Bristol, and those in supply chain companies such as GKN, said it would be seeking assurances on jobs and future work.   

Unite national officer for aerospace Rhys McCarthy said: ‘This is a sad day for Airbus’s dedicated UK workforce, who have made the iconic A380’s wings since it entered service in 2007. It is a much-loved aircraft manufactured by a highly skilled workforce.

‘Unite will be seeking urgent assurances from Airbus that there will be no job losses because of the decision to end production of the A380.

‘We are of the firm belief that with a full order book in single-aisle planes, such as the A320, that our members affected can be redeployed on to other work in Airbus.

‘Our members in the supply chain making many of the parts for the A380 are also our key concern. Over the coming days we will be engaging closely with companies such as GKN to ensure any impact is minimal as we offer our full support to some of the best aerospace workers in the world.’

In a media conference following the announcement, outgoing Airbus chief executive Tom Enders said the decision was ‘painful’.

‘It’s certainly painful to take the decision after all the effort, after all the money, after all the sweat that many, many thousand employees, and the CEO occasionally, have poured into that programme.

‘But in business, you have to base your decisions not on emotions or wishful thinking, but on facts.

‘After Emirates’ decision to reduce their orders, we simply don’t have enough backlog to carry on much longer.’

Mr Enders said: ‘What we’re seeing here is the end of the large four-engine aircraft.

‘There has been speculation for years that we were 10 years too early, but probably we were 10 years too late, or more. In retrospect, it’s all easy.’

But he stressed: ‘We are talking about the end of production of the A380, not the end of the programme.

‘Airbus will support these 200/230 aircraft as long as our customers want to operate these aircraft.’

Incoming chief executive Guillaume Faury said: ‘We will work on securing the phase-out and we will do this in close co-operation with our social partners and in a very responsible manner.’

On Brexit, Mr Enders said he was a ‘little more optimistic’ on a deal being reached.

He said: ‘The reason for hope is that we are getting signals – and I’m not going into details – that make me a little more optimistic that the worst can be prevented and that we’ll see a more orderly Brexit.’

Mr Enders added the firm intends to ‘plan for the worst as much as we can and hope for the best’.

Mr Enders said Airbus is making contingency plans for a hard Brexit, including stockpiling certain components.

But he said contingency planning would ‘always be insufficient’. He added that stockpiling ‘works for weeks or months, but certainly not beyond that’.

Airbus confirmed it hopes to redeploy a ‘significant’ number of impacted staff to other aircraft programmes. On the impact on British jobs, Mr Enders said: ‘It needs to be evaluated.

‘It’s clear we make a lot of wings in Britain and a few wings for the A380. Hopefully we can redeploy a significant number of our employees there and re-use also the infrastructure.’

Airbus declined to give details of the number of potential jobs that could be impacted.

Mr Faury said: ‘We are in the phase of analysing the situation and will have consultations with our partners.’

Mr Enders added: ‘Keep in mind that A380s will still roam the skies for many years to come and Airbus will of course continue to fully support the A380 operators.’

Nearly 240ft (73m) long and with space for more than 500 passengers, the A380 stole the title of world’s largest passenger jet from the Boeing 747 when it took its maiden commercial flight from Singapore to Sydney on October 27 2007.

The giant aircraft’s first commercial flight to Europe – a Singapore Airlines service – arrived at Heathrow on March 3 2008.

According to Airbus, the plane has flown more than 500,000 revenue flights and carried over 190 million passengers to date, with more than 300 commercial flights a day.

However concerns over the future of the superjumbo began to appear and in 2016 Airbus announced a drastic cut in production, reducing the build rate by half.

On Thursday, the firm said Emirates had chosen to reduce its order of A380s from 162 to 123 aircraft following a ‘review of its operations, and in light of developments in aircraft and engine technologies’.

Meanwhile, the UAE carrier is buying more of the smaller A330-900 and A350-900 aircraft, purchasing 40 and 30 respectively.

‘As a result of this decision we have no substantial A380 backlog and hence no basis to sustain production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years,’ Mr Enders said.

‘This leads to the end of A380 deliveries in 2021. The consequences of this decision are largely embedded in our 2018 full-year results.’

The Emirates order for the A330-900 and A350-900 is worth 21.4 billion US dollars (£16.6 billion).

Buzzing the pyramids, flying with the Red Arrows and the most glamorous cabins in the sky: The amazing story of the A380 told through incredible pictures

 By Jennifer Newton for MailOnline

The A380 ushered in a new era of glamour at 38,000ft, with carriers using its cavernous interior to install suites, showers and bars.

But now Airbus has sounded the death knell for this golden age of travel with the announcement, less than 12 years after its first commercial flight, that it will cease production of the superjumbo after 2021.

Here we look back at the aircraft’s remarkable history through fascinating pictures, from flying with the Red Arrows and buzzing the pyramids to peeks at the most luxurious cabins the aircraft offers.

The early days of the A380

In 1994 Airbus announced it was to develop a very large double-decker airliner, called the A3XX, the previous name for the A380. Pictured is an early rendering by Airbus of the aircraft  

In 1994 Airbus announced it was to develop a very large double-decker airliner, called the A3XX, the previous name for the A380. Pictured is an early rendering by Airbus of the aircraft  

In 1994 Airbus announced it was to develop a very large double-decker airliner, called the A3XX, the previous name for the A380. Pictured is an early rendering by Airbus of the aircraft  

Construction finally began in 2002. Pictured is a large section of fuselage being transported by road to the jetliner's final assembly plant in Toulouse, France

Construction finally began in 2002. Pictured is a large section of fuselage being transported by road to the jetliner's final assembly plant in Toulouse, France

Construction finally began in 2002. Pictured is a large section of fuselage being transported by road to the jetliner’s final assembly plant in Toulouse, France

Parts for the A380 are produced across four European countries before being brought to Toulouse to be assembled. Pictured is a section of A380 being loaded on to a ship in Pauillac, France 

Parts for the A380 are produced across four European countries before being brought to Toulouse to be assembled. Pictured is a section of A380 being loaded on to a ship in Pauillac, France 

Parts for the A380 are produced across four European countries before being brought to Toulouse to be assembled. Pictured is a section of A380 being loaded on to a ship in Pauillac, France 

A380 fuselage and wing sections are put on a freight ship ready to be shipped to Toulouse in October 2004 

A380 fuselage and wing sections are put on a freight ship ready to be shipped to Toulouse in October 2004 

A380 fuselage and wing sections are put on a freight ship ready to be shipped to Toulouse in October 2004 

The wings for the A380 are made at a facility in Broughton, Flintshire, in Wales. Pictured is a wing travelling on a barge on the River Dee  

The wings for the A380 are made at a facility in Broughton, Flintshire, in Wales. Pictured is a wing travelling on a barge on the River Dee  

The wings for the A380 are made at a facility in Broughton, Flintshire, in Wales. Pictured is a wing travelling on a barge on the River Dee  

A barge carries an A380 central fuselage down a river in the French city of Bordeaux in April 2004, during the development and construction of the first superjumbos  

A barge carries an A380 central fuselage down a river in the French city of Bordeaux in April 2004, during the development and construction of the first superjumbos  

A barge carries an A380 central fuselage down a river in the French city of Bordeaux in April 2004, during the development and construction of the first superjumbos  

A fuselage section for the A380 is moved to the double-deck jetliner’s final assembly facility in Toulouse in October 2004 

A fuselage section for the A380 is moved to the double-deck jetliner’s final assembly facility in Toulouse in October 2004 

A fuselage section for the A380 is moved to the double-deck jetliner’s final assembly facility in Toulouse in October 2004 

It was more than 30 years ago in 1988 when the idea for a super-sized 500-seat airliner was first mooted at Airbus. The aim? To directly challenge Boeing’s extremely popular 747.

By June 1994, Airbus announced it was to develop a very, very large double-decker airliner, called the A3XX.

And six years later the $8.8billion (£6.8billion) project to develop the plane, renamed the A380, began in earnest.

After the design of the huge new aircraft was finalised, construction finally began in 2002.

A section of fuselage is unloaded off a ship in Paulliac. A380 parts arrive by ship in Paulliac in France before being loaded on to barges to take them through Bordeaux to a dock at Langon and then by oversize road convoy to the assembly plant

A section of fuselage is unloaded off a ship in Paulliac. A380 parts arrive by ship in Paulliac in France before being loaded on to barges to take them through Bordeaux to a dock at Langon and then by oversize road convoy to the assembly plant

A section of fuselage is unloaded off a ship in Paulliac. A380 parts arrive by ship in Paulliac in France before being loaded on to barges to take them through Bordeaux to a dock at Langon and then by oversize road convoy to the assembly plant

A section of the first A380 fuselage arrives at the final assembly plant in Toulouse in January 2005, just months before the A380's maiden flight 

A section of the first A380 fuselage arrives at the final assembly plant in Toulouse in January 2005, just months before the A380's maiden flight 

A section of the first A380 fuselage arrives at the final assembly plant in Toulouse in January 2005, just months before the A380’s maiden flight 

Inside the Toulouse Airbus plant in January 2005, showing the first three A380s side by side as they are constructed  

Inside the Toulouse Airbus plant in January 2005, showing the first three A380s side by side as they are constructed  

Inside the Toulouse Airbus plant in January 2005, showing the first three A380s side by side as they are constructed  

One of the construction milestones came in January 2005, when the first A380 Rolls-Royce engine was assembled  

One of the construction milestones came in January 2005, when the first A380 Rolls-Royce engine was assembled  

One of the construction milestones came in January 2005, when the first A380 Rolls-Royce engine was assembled  

The first A380 passenger airliner is moved between hangars at the Airbus factory in Toulouse

The first A380 passenger airliner is moved between hangars at the Airbus factory in Toulouse

The first A380 passenger airliner is moved between hangars at the Airbus factory in Toulouse

Team effort: The forward and centre fuselages are made in France, the horizontal tail plane made in Spain and the tails fins and rear fuselages built in Germany

Team effort: The forward and centre fuselages are made in France, the horizontal tail plane made in Spain and the tails fins and rear fuselages built in Germany

Team effort: The forward and centre fuselages are made in France, the horizontal tail plane made in Spain and the tails fins and rear fuselages built in Germany

Workers gather in front of the nose cone of an Airbus A380 at the opening ceremony for the new final-assembly plant at Airbus's Toulouse factory in 2004. At that time, Airbus expected to sell more than 1,000 A380s. Total orders in the end totalled just over 320 

Workers gather in front of the nose cone of an Airbus A380 at the opening ceremony for the new final-assembly plant at Airbus's Toulouse factory in 2004. At that time, Airbus expected to sell more than 1,000 A380s. Total orders in the end totalled just over 320 

Workers gather in front of the nose cone of an Airbus A380 at the opening ceremony for the new final-assembly plant at Airbus’s Toulouse factory in 2004. At that time, Airbus expected to sell more than 1,000 A380s. Total orders in the end totalled just over 320 

The parts for the plane were built across Europe. The wings were constructed in Wales, the forward and centre fuselages made in France, the horizontal tail plane made in Spain and the tails fins and rear fuselages built in Germany.

They were then brought by sea, air and road, to the production plant in Toulouse to be assembled. Roads around the plant had to be widened in order for the huge new plane parts to be transported in.

The maiden flight

Airbus finally unveiled the first five test A380s in Toulouse in 2005 and the first maiden flight took place on April 27 of that year.

The giant plane touched down to applause after a flight of just under four hours. Nearly 30,000 spectators watched the behemoth take off and land.

In April 2005 the first A380 was moved from the assembly plant across a busy road to Airbus’s flight test centre at Toulouse-Blagnac Airport 

In April 2005 the first A380 was moved from the assembly plant across a busy road to Airbus’s flight test centre at Toulouse-Blagnac Airport 

In April 2005 the first A380 was moved from the assembly plant across a busy road to Airbus’s flight test centre at Toulouse-Blagnac Airport 

The A380 touches down in Toulouse after its maiden flight on April 27, 2005. The giant plane landed to applause after a flight of just under four hours

The A380 touches down in Toulouse after its maiden flight on April 27, 2005. The giant plane landed to applause after a flight of just under four hours

The A380 touches down in Toulouse after its maiden flight on April 27, 2005. The giant plane landed to applause after a flight of just under four hours

The crew on the maiden flight took no chances - they donned parachutes and a handrail was installed inside the test plane leading from the cockpit to an escape door that could have been jettisoned had the pilots lost control. The plane was jointly captained by Claude Lelaie, Airbus’ Senior Vice President Flight Division, and Chief Test Pilot and Vice President Jacques Rosay

The crew on the maiden flight took no chances - they donned parachutes and a handrail was installed inside the test plane leading from the cockpit to an escape door that could have been jettisoned had the pilots lost control. The plane was jointly captained by Claude Lelaie, Airbus’ Senior Vice President Flight Division, and Chief Test Pilot and Vice President Jacques Rosay

The crew on the maiden flight took no chances – they donned parachutes and a handrail was installed inside the test plane leading from the cockpit to an escape door that could have been jettisoned had the pilots lost control. The plane was jointly captained by Claude Lelaie, Airbus’ Senior Vice President Flight Division, and Chief Test Pilot and Vice President Jacques Rosay

Airbus staff and media gather around the A380 after its maiden flight. During the first flight it recorded measurements for 150,000 separate parameters and beamed real-time data back to computers on the ground 

Airbus staff and media gather around the A380 after its maiden flight. During the first flight it recorded measurements for 150,000 separate parameters and beamed real-time data back to computers on the ground 

Airbus staff and media gather around the A380 after its maiden flight. During the first flight it recorded measurements for 150,000 separate parameters and beamed real-time data back to computers on the ground 

Once testing of the aircraft was complete, the A380 went on a world tour. It first came to Britain in 2006 when it appeared at the Farnborough Airshow and flew alongside the RAF's Red Arrows 

Once testing of the aircraft was complete, the A380 went on a world tour. It first came to Britain in 2006 when it appeared at the Farnborough Airshow and flew alongside the RAF's Red Arrows 

Once testing of the aircraft was complete, the A380 went on a world tour. It first came to Britain in 2006 when it appeared at the Farnborough Airshow and flew alongside the RAF’s Red Arrows 

In March 2007, the A380 touched down on US soil for the first time, during its world tour. It is pictured landing at New York's JFK Airport  

In March 2007, the A380 touched down on US soil for the first time, during its world tour. It is pictured landing at New York's JFK Airport  

In March 2007, the A380 touched down on US soil for the first time, during its world tour. It is pictured landing at New York’s JFK Airport  

 After landing at JFK, the world's largest passenger plane was honoured by the New York Fire Department, which sprayed water over the aircraft 

 After landing at JFK, the world's largest passenger plane was honoured by the New York Fire Department, which sprayed water over the aircraft 

 After landing at JFK, the world’s largest passenger plane was honoured by the New York Fire Department, which sprayed water over the aircraft 

While travelling around the US on a world tour, the A380 also made a pit stop in Washington DC. The aircraft is pictured flying across Capitol Hill and the Washington Monument 

While travelling around the US on a world tour, the A380 also made a pit stop in Washington DC. The aircraft is pictured flying across Capitol Hill and the Washington Monument 

While travelling around the US on a world tour, the A380 also made a pit stop in Washington DC. The aircraft is pictured flying across Capitol Hill and the Washington Monument 

The A380 flies past the high rise buildings of Hong Kong during its world tour in 2007 

The A380 flies past the high rise buildings of Hong Kong during its world tour in 2007 

The A380 flies past the high rise buildings of Hong Kong during its world tour in 2007 

THE AIRBUS A380 

Overall length: 72.72m

Cabin length: 49.80m

Wing span (geometric): 79.75m

Height: 24.09m

Typical seating: 544 (4-class)

Max seating: 853

Range: 15,200km

Max fuel capacity: 320,000 litres

Average list price (2018): $445.6million (£323.22million) 

The on-board equipment recorded measurements for 150,000 separate parameters and beamed real-time data back to computers on the ground.

The crew snapped souvenir photos in flight and after touching down.

They also took no chances – donning parachutes for the first flight. A handrail inside the test plane lead from the cockpit to an escape door that could have been jettisoned had the pilots lost control.

But problems were soon afoot when later that year, customers who had ordered the aircraft were warned of a six-month delay due to wiring problems.

The first trans-Atlantic flight, from France to Colombia, took place in 2006 before cold climate testing in Canada and approval from both the European Aviation Safety Agency and the United States Federal Aviation Administration.

Comfort testing began in late 2006, before Airbus warned of yet another delay to its first delivery.

The first passenger services

The inaugural customer was Singapore Airlines, which received its first A380 in October 2007.

The first commercial flight was from Singapore to Sydney that month.

The first customer to have an A380 delivered for service was Singapore Airlines. Pictured is the carrier's first plane leaving the Airbus assembly plant. The first commercial flight was from Singapore to Sydney in October 2007

The first customer to have an A380 delivered for service was Singapore Airlines. Pictured is the carrier's first plane leaving the Airbus assembly plant. The first commercial flight was from Singapore to Sydney in October 2007

The first customer to have an A380 delivered for service was Singapore Airlines. Pictured is the carrier’s first plane leaving the Airbus assembly plant. The first commercial flight was from Singapore to Sydney in October 2007

Singapore Airlines revolutionised air travel on its A380s by introducing first class suites. Sharmala Huey Yuen, a Singapore Airlines flight attendant, prepares the double bed in the luxury class suite in September 2009 

Singapore Airlines revolutionised air travel on its A380s by introducing first class suites. Sharmala Huey Yuen, a Singapore Airlines flight attendant, prepares the double bed in the luxury class suite in September 2009 

Singapore Airlines revolutionised air travel on its A380s by introducing first class suites. Sharmala Huey Yuen, a Singapore Airlines flight attendant, prepares the double bed in the luxury class suite in September 2009 

The Singapore Airlines suites feature sliding doors and window blinds, an armchair hand-stitched by master Italian craftsmen, a standalone bed and a 23-inch wide LCD screen. Pictured is the recently revamped suite

The Singapore Airlines suites feature sliding doors and window blinds, an armchair hand-stitched by master Italian craftsmen, a standalone bed and a 23-inch wide LCD screen. Pictured is the recently revamped suite

The Singapore Airlines suites feature sliding doors and window blinds, an armchair hand-stitched by master Italian craftsmen, a standalone bed and a 23-inch wide LCD screen. Pictured is the recently revamped suite

Passengers wanting to travel in the first-class suite on Singapore Airline's A380 need to fork out five figures

Passengers wanting to travel in the first-class suite on Singapore Airline's A380 need to fork out five figures

Passengers wanting to travel in the first-class suite on Singapore Airline’s A380 need to fork out five figures

A flight attendant arranges a business class seat of a Singapore Airlines A380 in December 2017 

A flight attendant arranges a business class seat of a Singapore Airlines A380 in December 2017 

A flight attendant arranges a business class seat of a Singapore Airlines A380 in December 2017 

In the battle to fill their seats with high-fliers, the world's top airlines rolled out evermore luxurious options for top-tier travelers on A380s

In the battle to fill their seats with high-fliers, the world's top airlines rolled out evermore luxurious options for top-tier travelers on A380s

In the battle to fill their seats with high-fliers, the world’s top airlines rolled out evermore luxurious options for top-tier travelers on A380s

The first class bar on the upper deck of an Emirates A380. The Dubai-based airline is the largest operator of the huge aircraft 

The first class bar on the upper deck of an Emirates A380. The Dubai-based airline is the largest operator of the huge aircraft 

The first class bar on the upper deck of an Emirates A380. The Dubai-based airline is the largest operator of the huge aircraft 

Following Singapore’s lead, Emirates created lavish cabins, with first class ticket holders given showers and private suites

Following Singapore’s lead, Emirates created lavish cabins, with first class ticket holders given showers and private suites

Following Singapore’s lead, Emirates created lavish cabins, with first class ticket holders given showers and private suites

Abu Dhabi-based airline Etihad, which operates 10 A380s, also has luxurious private first class cabins with beds 

Abu Dhabi-based airline Etihad, which operates 10 A380s, also has luxurious private first class cabins with beds 

Abu Dhabi-based airline Etihad, which operates 10 A380s, also has luxurious private first class cabins with beds 

Singapore Airlines revolutionised air travel on its A380s by introducing first class suites featuring sliding doors and window blinds, an armchair hand-stitched by master Italian craftsmen, a standalone bed and a 23-inch wide LCD screen.

Almost a year later in July 2008, Emirates became the second airline to fly the aircraft. It now has over 100 A380s in its fleet, making it the biggest customer.

Following Singapore’s lead, it created lavish cabins, with first class ticket holders given showers and private suites.

Australian flag-carrier Qantas was third to take delivery of the A380 while British Airways received its first A380 in 2013. No US carrier has ever ordered an A380.

Problems arise

Despite being launched to much fanfare and receiving orders from 13 different airlines, the A380 has been beset with issues.

In November 2010, Qantas Airways and Singapore Airlines temporarily suspended flights of the A380 after an engine failure forced an emergency landing in Singapore.

Emirates became the second airline to fly the aircraft. It now has over 100 A380s in its fleet, making it the biggest customer. Pictured is the first Emirates A380 after rolling off the production line in 2008  

Emirates became the second airline to fly the aircraft. It now has over 100 A380s in its fleet, making it the biggest customer. Pictured is the first Emirates A380 after rolling off the production line in 2008  

Emirates became the second airline to fly the aircraft. It now has over 100 A380s in its fleet, making it the biggest customer. Pictured is the first Emirates A380 after rolling off the production line in 2008  

In November 2010, the Airbus A380 test aircraft flew a special flight over the Pyramids in Egypt following airport compatibility tests carried out at Cairo International Airport to confirm the airport was capable of handling A380 operations 

In November 2010, the Airbus A380 test aircraft flew a special flight over the Pyramids in Egypt following airport compatibility tests carried out at Cairo International Airport to confirm the airport was capable of handling A380 operations 

In November 2010, the Airbus A380 test aircraft flew a special flight over the Pyramids in Egypt following airport compatibility tests carried out at Cairo International Airport to confirm the airport was capable of handling A380 operations 

British Airways received its first A380 in July 2013 and on its arrival at Heathrow, BA staff greeted it with Union flags. BA has 12 A380s in its fleet 

British Airways received its first A380 in July 2013 and on its arrival at Heathrow, BA staff greeted it with Union flags. BA has 12 A380s in its fleet 

British Airways received its first A380 in July 2013 and on its arrival at Heathrow, BA staff greeted it with Union flags. BA has 12 A380s in its fleet 

And by July, 2016 Airbus announced that it was cutting production of the A380 in half, going to just one jet a month by 2018.

By 2018, Airbus said it would have no other choice but to halt the costly A380 programme if Dubai’s Emirates airline, its biggest customer of the A380, did not place another order.

Last year Emirates Airlines struck a $16 billion (£12.3 billion) deal to buy 36 A380s, but it is now switching some orders to the smaller A350.

Analysts have pointed to customers demanding flights directly to their destination rather than following Airbus’s model of taking a long haul journey from hub-to-hub followed by a short hop on a smaller plane.

The 100th A380 was bought by Malaysia Airlines and delivered in March 2013

The 100th A380 was bought by Malaysia Airlines and delivered in March 2013

The 100th A380 was bought by Malaysia Airlines and delivered in March 2013

A special celebration was held at the Airbus factory in November 2017 when the 100th A380 for Emirates was handed over

A special celebration was held at the Airbus factory in November 2017 when the 100th A380 for Emirates was handed over

A special celebration was held at the Airbus factory in November 2017 when the 100th A380 for Emirates was handed over

In late 2018, All Nippon Airways placed an order for three A380s each with a special livery depicting sea turtles native to Hawaii. They will be among the last A380s to roll off the production line 

In late 2018, All Nippon Airways placed an order for three A380s each with a special livery depicting sea turtles native to Hawaii. They will be among the last A380s to roll off the production line 

In late 2018, All Nippon Airways placed an order for three A380s each with a special livery depicting sea turtles native to Hawaii. They will be among the last A380s to roll off the production line 

When it was launched, the A380 boasted highly customised interiors to help airlines promote a luxury feel, but the cost of replacing such bespoke fittings is now seen as a handicap.

Also, airlines began favouring smaller twin-engined models, which are easier to fill and cheaper to maintain.

Today the firm said Emirates had chosen to reduce its order of A380s from 162 to 123 aircraft following a ‘review of its operations, and in light of developments in aircraft and engine technologies’.

Meanwhile, the UAE carrier is buying more of the smaller A330-900 and A350-900 aircraft, purchasing 40 and 30 respectively.

‘As a result of this decision we have no substantial A380 backlog and hence no basis to sustain production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years,’ Airbus chief executive Tom Enderss said.

‘This leads to the end of A380 deliveries in 2021. The consequences of this decision are largely embedded in our 2018 full-year results.’

Airbus will produce 17 more of the planes including 14 for Emirates and 3 for Japanese airline All Nippon Airways.

AIRLINES THAT HAVE THE A380 IN THEIR FLEETS 

Singapore Airlines – 19 A380s

Emirates – 109 A380s

Qantas – 12 A380s

Air France – 10 A380s

Lufthansa – 14 A380s

Korean Air – 10 A380s

China Southern Airlines – five A380s 

 Malaysia Airlines – six A380s 

Thai Airways – six A380s 

British Airways – 12 A380s

Asiana Airlines – six A380s 

Qatar Airways – 10 A380s

Etihad Airways – 10 A380s 

Hi Fly – One A380

 

 



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