MIAMI — The first Airbus A330-900neo for Delta Air Lines has rolled out of the paint shop in Toulouse.
In November, the plane rolled out of the assembly—the same day when the airline confirmed that an additional 10 planes have been ordered.
At the time, the plane was seen sporting Delta’s tail design, waiting for a full coat of paint and to be fitted with its two Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines.
Airways staff photographer, Clément Alloing, was there to capture the airliner rolling out of the factory to its first public appearance on Toulouse-Blagnac’s tarmac.
Today, however, the plane came out of the paint shop wearing the full Delta livery.
The Airways team of photographers on-site are standing by to take additional photos. At the moment, the plane is blocked by other airframes for better daytime shots.
Looking Back At The Delta A330neo Order
On November 19, 2014, Delta announced a major order for 50 new Airbus widebody aircraft, including 25 A330-900neos and 25 A350-900s.
The order represented, at the time, an important victory for Airbus over rival Boeing, who had been pitching its Boeing 787-9 and five new Boeing 777-200LRs as a stopgap offer until 787-9 delivery slots opened up.
The order also marked the conclusion of an RFP (request for proposals) issued by Delta in spring 2014 to replace portions of its Boeing 767 and Boeing 747 fleet, the latter of which was retired by the end of 2017.
The US carrier, looking to reaffirm its status as one of the world’s most efficient operators of Airbus wide-body fleets, later placed an order for ten additional A330-900neos on November 14, 2018—exactly four years after opening the sales books of the re-engined A330 program.
“Expanding our A330 order book not only ensures that Delta’s near-to-medium-term widebody needs are taken care of but also drives our strategic, measured international growth,” said Gil West, Delta’s Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.
The launch operator of the type, however, was TAP Portugal, who took delivery of the first A330-900neo last month.