By: Air Traveller PH Staff
End of an era is nearing for the Airbus A380. The last three A380 wings have left the Airbus Boughton assembly line which will be transported via barge to Mostyn Port before heading to Toulouse in France for the final assembly. The Broughton plant builds the wings of the A380.
Airbus will be delivering the very last A380 to Emirates in 2021 but seeing the last wing leave the Broughton line must already be an emotional moment for the manufacturer, the people behind it, and the fans.
Airbus will be delivering six more A380s before finally ending production of the aircraft.
The A380 first took its commercial flight with Singapore Airlines in 2007. Though many were hopeful that the superjumbo will do great the fact that it can carry 555 passengers with a certification of up to 853 passengers in a single-class all-economy configuration, the options of airlines have shifted from jumbos to long-range twin-engine aircraft. This resulted to the dwindling of A380 sales, where airlines chose the the Boeing 787, 777, Airbus A350, and A330NEO in place.
Not all airports are also certified for A380 operations. Manila's Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is one of them. Though the runway can take A380s and Terminal 3 has already serviced an Emirates A380, with an 80 meter wingspan, the A380 would have special needs in order to operate normal commercial flights in NAIA.
Emirates is the biggest customer with 115 orders.
Last year, Airbus announced the end of production of the A380 in 2021. The aircraft manufacturer however said, "The A380 will continue flying, with Airbus support, for decades to come…”