DALLAS – Plane maker Airbus has delivered its first A321neo airliner to be assembled at its Final Assembly Line Asia (FAL Tianjin). The aircraft (B-32DF) was handed over to Shanghai-based Juneyao Air (HO) in a special ceremony.
Along with its final assembly facilities in Hamburg, Germany; Toulouse, France; and Mobile, United States, the Tijan plant was opened back in 2008. It became Airbus’ first commercial aircraft assembly line outside of Europe. Since opening, over 600 aircraft have been delivered from the site. Work to make the site fully A321 capable began in August 2022 and was the first significant upgrade of the assembly line since it opened. Work was completed in November 2022, and in the official statement, Airbus said that it demonstrated its ‘commitment to enhance its long-term strategic partnership with China.’
Speaking of the momentous occasion, George Xu, Airbus Executive Vice President and Airbus China CEO, said, “Since we announced the commissioning of the first A321 aircraft at FAL Tianjin last November, the relevant final assembly activities and tests went on smoothly, showcasing the maturity of FAL Tianjin to quickly adapt to new products.
“The successful delivery of the first A321 aircraft enables Airbus to honour the popularity of the aircraft for the China market and beyond – and the consistent trust and support from our customers. Airbus continues to expand and enhance its comprehensive cooperation with China’s aviation industry, underlining its long-term commitment to China to ensure customer proximity while supporting the global commercial aircraft production ramp-up.”
Keen to highlight its green credentials, the delivery flight of the Pratt & Whitney GTF-powered jet was carried out using a 10% Sustainable Aviation Fuel blend.
Juneyao Air was founded in 2005 as Juneyao Airlines. It operates a fleet of Airbus A320 family aircraft, including five A321neos and six Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners.
Featured Image: Airbus.