Emirates takes delivery of first A380 in 12 months

The Middle Eastern carrier has accepted its 116th superjumbo after a year of no deliveries 

The world’s largest Airbus A380 operator, Emirates has accepted its first superjumbo in a year, following a hand over on Saturday (December 5). 

The jet, A6-EVL (c/n 261) is the first of three examples the UAE flag carrier says it is planning to take delivery of this month, after breaking its year-long halt on handovers. 

Aviation Image Network/Simon Gregory
(Photo Aviation Image Network/Simon Gregory)

The aircraft arrived in Dubai in the early hours of Saturday morning, powered by a blend of conventional jet fuel and sustainable aviation fuel. This is the first time the airline is using sustainable aviation fuel to power an A380. The biofuel used for the flight was produced from used cooking oil in Finland. 

Alongside the delivery announcement, Emirates revealed that one of the remaining A380s it will take delivery of this year will feature its long-awaited Premium Economy cabin.  

(Photo Aviation Image Network/BaoLuo)

Tim Clark, president of Emirates, said: “The A380 has been a success story for Emirates, and this is reflected in the strong customer interest wherever we’ve deployed the aircraft over the years…With the space and technology on this aircraft, we’ve been able to introduce new concepts onboard that have transformed the flying experience for the better. We look forward to introducing our Premium Economy experience on which will make its debut on an A380 in the coming months, and we will continue to invest in our world-class A380 product experience.” 

(Photo Aviation Image Network/Bailey)

Powered by four Rolls-Royce Trent 972 engines, Victor Lima is the Middle Eastern carrier’s 116th A380 and was produced by the European airframer around 18 months ago. The jet’s first flight took place on July 24, 2019. 

So far this year, owing to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis, Airbus has managed to deliver just one other A380. On October 30, Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways accepted JA383A (c/n 266) into its fleet, marking the first handover for the type since December 2019.