MIAMI — Lufthansa has phased out its oldest Airbus A320, (D-AIPA • CN069). This particular A320 was the first to be delivered to the German flag carrier and has been flying over Europe for three decades.
The plane has remained in Lufthansa’s fleet longer than most of their Boeing 747-400s, half their A340-300s, and some of their A340-600s.
It even remained in their fleet longer than Lufthansa’s entire Boeing 737-500 fleet, which was operated by the carrier from 1990 to 2016.
To mark the retirement, the aircraft performed a flypast over Airbus’ Hamburg-Finkenwerder factory, where all models of the A320 family are built. The assembly line exclusively manufactures the A319neo, A321neo, and A321LR.
Lufthansa later flew the aircraft back to it’s Frankfurt hub.
The German carrier still operates some of the oldest A320s around, including the rest of the examples first delivered to the airline almost 30 years ago, all bearing the D-AIP* registration.
Even though Lufthansa still operates a large amount of the oldest A320s in the world, the group’s low-cost carrier, Germanwings, also operates a handful of them.
Interestingly, D-AIPA was the fifth oldest A320 flying. The eldest still flying, JY-JAC (MSN029), which has an age of 30.4 years, is currently operated by Jordan Aviation.
Lufthansa is currently in the process of modernizing its short to medium haul fleet with newer A320ceos and over 100 A320neos.
The airline currently operates 19 A320neos, with 96 more on order. It was the worldwide launch customer for the type back in 2016 and still has four A320ceos on order.
Lufthansa also received its first of 41 A321neos earlier in May, with revenue flights set to start in early June.