Airbus has decided to offer a further enhanced
version of the popular A330 airliner by increasing the maximum
takeoff weight capability to 240 metric tonnes.
The 240 tonne capability will be first applied
to the larger
A330-300 model and subsequently to the
The 240 tonne A330-300 will benefit from up to
400nm extra range – to 5,950nm (11,020km) – with 300 passengers
and carry nearly five tonnes more payload than today’s 235 tonne
Meanwhile, the new 240 tonne A330-200 will
fly up to 270nm further – to 7,050nm (13,060km) – with 246
passengers and carry over 2.5 tonnes more payload than today’s 238
The two models will also bring increased
fuel efficiency thanks to aerodynamic refinements and engine
Entry into service of the 240 tonne A330-300 is
aimed for mid 2015.
In practical terms 240 tonne capability
significantly extends the market coverage of the A330 Family. For
example, this newest A330-300 will now be able to connect to the
following new city pairs: London to Tokyo; Frankfurt to Cape Town;
Beijing to Melbourne; Beijing to San Francisco; Kuala Lumpur to
Paris; and Los Angeles to Dublin.
Moreover, compared with the original 212 tonne
A330-300 in 1992, the 240 tonne A330-300 can fly 2,000nm (3,700km)
further and now cover 90% of the market from Heathrow – up 51%
from 39% market coverage at original EIS.
“The A330 has come a long way in the last 10
years, and we are delighted to bring to more airlines the
advantages and reliability of A330 economics over ever wider
markets,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer Customers of
Airbus. “This aircraft is the most popular aircraft ever in its
category and looks set to hold this position for years to come.”
A key advantage of 240 tonne capability is that
the increase in range allows the A330-300 to cover more of the
A330-200 network, this gives airlines the flexibility to use the
A330-200 to open new routes and grow frequency whilst using the
A330-300 to grow capacity at low cost.
The A330 Family, which spans 250 to 300 seats,
and includes Freighter, VIP, and Military Transport/Tanker
variants, has now attracted around 1,200 orders and some 900
aircraft are flying with over 90 operators worldwide.
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