Airbus: progress on new Beluga XL

Airbus says it has passed a milestone on the way to production of its new Beluga XL transporter. Conceptual designs are finalized, with Airbus now satisfied that the Beluga XL is robust and ready to move to the detailed design phase.

Airbus representatives said this all paves the way for final assembly to ‘start in 2017’, with the first of five planes in the skies by 2019. “We are happy to be at this point less than a year after the launch of the program,” said Bertrand George, head of the Beluga XL program.

Based on the A330-200 freighter, the Beluga XL will be powered by Rolls Royce Trent 700 engines. The Airbus fleet will consist of five aircraft that will increase the transport capacity by 30% from the current Beluga version.

© 2015 contributor Fabio Gigante
Featured image: The concept for the Beluga XL is now finished. (Image Airbus S.A.S.)