MIAMI — The first Airbus A350 XWB for TAM Airlines has successfully performed its first test flight, as it gets ready for its delivery to the Brazilian carrier in the next weeks.
TAM will become the first carrier from the Americas to fly the A350 and the fourth operator in the world. This aircraft (MSN 0024) will be painted in the standard red, blue and white TAM colors. Beginning with the 4th A350 delivery, the new fleet will be adorned in the new but yet to be revealed LATAM Airlines corporate identity scheme, as announced last August.
TAM and Airbus have a close relationship. The carrier operates a vast A320 family aircraft fleet and is also a customer for the A320neo. Also, its has a fleet of Airbus A330-200 aircraft and also had the distinction to operate the Airbus A340-500.
The aircraft will continue to the final production phase, which includes further ground checks and flight tests prior to the delivery. The carrier expects to deploy the A350 XWB in January 2016 between Sao Paulo and Manaus, followed by international service from Sao Paulo to Miami, Madrid and Orlando.
In Brazil, TAM and Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras are Airbus A350 XWB customers. Azul holds a firm order for four A350-900 placed in April last year. The airline, one of the leading domestic carriers in Brazil, has started international service to the United States, and operates seven Airbus A330 for its flights to the United States.