German carrier Lufthansa is one of the most impressive airlines in the world. The Star Alliance member is a part of the Lufthansa Group, which is the parent company of not just the German giant, but also Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, SWISS, and Lufthansa’s cargo division. With a long history of operations, Simple Flying looks at the oldest aircraft currently in operation with Lufthansa.
For this article, only Lufthansa is considered, and not any other airlines in the group or Lufthansa Cargo. The German carrier operates a mix of narrowbodies for short- and some medium-haul operations and widebodies to take over some of the high-profile medium-haul routes, a few short-haul routes when available and demand warrants it, and, most notably, the carrier’s long-haul routes, where the airline offers first class onboard select aircraft like the 747-8I and Airbus A380, among others.
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Data from Planespotters.net shows that Lufthansa has 282 aircraft, with one additional A320 withdrawn from use but still listed. The largest chunk of these are Airbus A320 family planes. This includes 23 A319s, 86 A320s, and 68 A321s. This comes to a total of 177 narrowbody aircraft.
Moving on to widebodies, the airline operates 15 Airbus A330s – all of which are the larger -300s. There are also 34 Airbus A340s, split evenly between the -300s and the newer -600s. Next up are 16 Airbus A350-900s and 14 Airbus A380s.
Currently, the airline only operates one widebody type from Boeing, though it will be taking the new 777Xs. The airline has 26 747s, of which 19 are the newest 747-8Is, and seven are 747-400s.
Which are the oldest planes?
The oldest plane in Lufthansa’s fleet is an Airbus A320 registered as D-AIQF. The airline has been with Lufthansa since its delivery 1991, making it 29 years old.
The next oldest aircraft is D-AIQS, another Airbus A320. This one, however, is 27 years old, having been delivered to Lufthansa back in 1993.
There are then three Airbus A321s. From oldest to youngest, these are D-AIRH, D-AIRA, and D-AIRB, all of which are 27 years old.
What about widebodies?
The oldest Airbus A340-300 is 24 years old. This aircraft is registered as D-AIGL. Compared to other jets, this is the 18th oldest aircraft in Lufthansa’s fleet. This plane is actually older than all of the Airbus A319s in the carrier’s fleet, beating out the oldest A319, D-AILA, by a month. In 25th place overall and the second oldest A340 in the carrier’s fleet is another A340-300 registered as D-AIGM.
Coming in 28th place overall and marking the carrier’s oldest Boeing 747, D-ABVR is 23 years old and a Boeing 747-400. This is followed up closely by another 23-year-old 747-400 registered as D-ABVT.
Looking solely at the A330-300s, D-AIKB is the oldest of that fleet. Coming in at 16 years old, the jet is relatively young compared to many other aircraft in Lufthansa’s fleet.
The oldest A340-600 is 17 years old. Registered as D-AIHB, the jet has been with Lufthansa since 2003.
As for the A380s, the oldest of those planes is D-AIMA, which came to the carrier ten years ago. This jet is closely followed up by, from oldest to youngest, D-AIMB, D-AIMC, and D-AIMD, which are all ten years old, making those jumbos nearly one-third of the age of Lufthansa’s oldest aircraft.
As for the A350s. The oldest A350 is only four years old and is registered as D-AIXA. Lufthansa still has A350s on order and will continue to take them over the next several years.
Meanwhile, for the 747-8Is, Lufthansa has received all 19 of the type it had ordered, with the oldest one being eight years old and registered as D-ABYA.
This list could change soon
Amidst the current crisis, Lufthansa is making a strategic review of its fleet. While the airline is reactivating some A340-300s, there are some other aircraft that might not see such a fate. Reactivating aircraft is hefty work and only makes sense for planes that the airline plans to put back in service. However, with parked planes and a global crisis, this also gives Lufthansa a chance to reset its fleet and retire some older aircraft.
Certainly, there will be some Airbus A320ceo family retirements as the airline has A320neo planes on order. But, when it comes to widebodies, the airline may be getting ready to retire some of its aircraft with four engines such as the Airbus A380s and some A340s and Boeing 747-400s.
For now, however, these are the oldest aircraft in Lufthansa’s fleet.
What is the oldest Lufthansa plane you’ve flown on? Let us know in the comments!