For those that are eagerly awaiting updates on the new Boeing 777X, you will be pleased to know that final structure is in place and only the engines need to be joined.
This first 777X-9 is on track to be delivered to Lufthansa in 2020 and will be the first to fly of Boeing’s new flagship aircraft.
What is the story so far?
The Boeing 777x has been designed to replace the current generation of 777 aircraft as well as the retiring 747 aircraft.
But to be such a versatile aircraft, it would require new technologies (such as the folding wingtips to fit in the same airports as current aircraft) and utilizing engineering principles developed for the very success Boeing 787.
The program launched back in 2012, with Lufthansa originally booking in 34 of the 777X aircraft to replace its older 747 fleet. They would later roll back their order to only 20, with a decision to buy several more A350s instead.
Production of the first 777x test model started in 2017, to understand the best ways to build the design, and see if the aircraft can operate correctly on the ground. Then, in 2018, Boeing began construction of their flight test models (specifically number 7 and 8). The first of these has been earmarked to go to Lufthansa once testing is complete.
In late November 2018, the electrical systems were installed and tested, turning the assembling into an actual active machine.
On February 15th this year, the final structural joining was complete, with the wing, midsection and main structure all joined together (so it finally looked like an actual plane).
From here, we can confirm that in the last two weeks the first 777x-9 has begun its paint job, ahead of flight tests in the near future.
What has Lufthansa’s reaction been?
Lufthansa, of course, has been monitoring the progress of their new aircraft closely. This will be the first of 20 777X series aircraft in their future fleet.
The 777x series is based on the proven 777, which is already being flown by Lufthansa Cargo as a cargo version and by Austrian Airlines and Swiss as a passenger version. With a length of 76.6 meters and a width of 71.8 meters, the 777-9 far surpasses its predecessor and is currently the longest passenger aircraft in the world. – Markus Löhn, Lufthansa Group Representative at Boeing
Lufthansa will have an all-new interior for the 777X, including a new business class cabin.
Boeing has addressed concerns about any delays in the 777x construction and eventual delivery, saying that they are very confident that they will deliver the aircraft and guarantee its entry into service in 2020.
What do you think? Will the 777x come together successfully for Lufthansa? Let us know in the comments.