Featured photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure.
New year, new aircraft. The long-awaited Airbus A350-1000 has finally been delivered to its launch customer, Qatar Airways. The historical milestone occurred on February 20, 2018, when Qatar's new jet was flown from Toulouse in France to Doha, Qatar, with much fanfare.
Compared to the smaller A350-900, the A350-1000 features a seating capacity of up to 360 passengers. Qatar Airways, for example, equipped its A350-1000s with 328 seats in a two-class configuration, with 46 business class seats in a 1-2-1 layout, as well as 281 economy seats in a 3-3-3 configuration. The Airbus A350-1000 features uprated Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 engines, capable of delivering up to 97,000 pounds of thrust, as compared to the 84,000 pounds of thrust per engine on the A350-900. Furthermore, to support the extra weight of the 74-meter long frame, the A350-1000 also features 6 wheels on each main landing gear assembly, similar to the Boeing 777.
One of the most significant features of this aircraft is that it features new seats in both cabins; the business class cabin consists of the QSuite, which in my opinion is one of the best business class seats currently flying. Each pod has a closing door; furthermore, passengers seated in the middle section can combine four pods to form a larger "suite." The economy cabin also featured a refresh; it now uses the popular Recaro CL3710 seat with larger Thales entertainment screens.
Image courtesy of Airbus and Qatar Airways.
Along with the delivery of this aircraft (bearing the Qatari registration A7-ANA), the airline also took delivery of its first A350-900 with the refreshed cabins. It is widely speculated that the existing A350s will receive the same cabin overhaul as well. All told, Qatar has 76 A350 family aircraft on order. The A350-1000 initially launched between Qatar and London; Qatar Airways' CEO Mr. Akbar Al Baker also hinted that flights to "the U.S. East Coast" will also launch soon using the aircraft.
Are you excited to be flying on Qatar's A350-1000?