MIAMI — American Airlines’ first Boeing 787-8 took to the skies today and AirwaysNews.com was on hand to capture these images of the aircraft’s maiden voyage.
“Boeing 817 to Boeing Everett, aircraft airworthy,” was heard by the pilots on-board the aircraft shortly after take off on one of Boeing’s test flight frequencies as the plane began its B-1 test sortie over Washington State as BOE-817 according to Flight Aware.
Initially American was expecting this aircraft by the end of 2014, but delays with delivery of the airline’s all-new business class seats designed by Zodiac Aerospace pushed back the arrival to the Dallas based company to the first quarter of 2015.
Initial routes will include flights to Chicago, Los Angeles from Dallas/Fort Worth. It is expected that the aircraft will make its international debut in the second quarter of 2015, but the airline still has not revealed what routes the 787 will be seen on. Some speculation is that it could eventually go onto Los Angeles-Tokyo-Haneda if it is awarded, as the 787 is the perfect airplane for that kind of route.
American has been quoted as saying that it will roll out an entire new seat concept that is designed specifically for the carriers 787s. American placed its order in October 2008 for 42 firm and 58 options, with the original expected arrival of October 2012.
While no official configurations have been confirmed by American yet, it has been suggested that the aircraft will feature 28 business class seats, 48 main cabin extra and 150 economy seats.
It was expected that the first 787 going to American was going to be the -9 version; however that was later changed to the -8 that seen here today. Last reported by The All Things 787 Blog, American has 16 787-8s and 26 787-9s on order.
When delivered American will become the second 787 carrier in the U.S. to fly the type and fourth in North America behind United Airlines, Aeromexico and Air Canada.