Airbus A380 to debut at L.A.

The world's largest passenger jet, Airbus A380, will make its long-awaited landing Monday at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) as part of its U.S. debut, officials in Los Angeles said. The landing at LAX on Monday morning is scheduled to coincide with another A380 touchdown at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport. The European airplane maker is using the U.S. test flights to burnish its image after technical problems led to a two-year delivery delay. Airbus' woes have helped its U.S. rival Boeing sell more planes, including an updated version of its 747 jumbo that Airbus had hoped would fade away when it introduced the A380. Boeing sold a record number of airplanes last year and surpassed Airbus in orders for the first time since 2000.

Los Angeles World Airports, the city agency that operates LAX, has spent more than 49 million dollars on a variety of projects to accommodate A380s, and another 72 million dollars will be spent incoming years. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Airbus officials are expected to hold a news conference at the airport after the super-jumbo jet makes its landing. With a double-decked cabin and a wingspan nearly the length of a football field, A380 can carry more than 800 passengers in an all economy-class configuration, or 555 with first-class and business seating. Airbus officials had originally said that they would fly the A380 only to New York, and then on to Chicago, bypassing Los Angeles altogether. The decision led to some last-minute negotiations between the city and the plane maker.

View: Full Story
News source: Xinhua

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Musicload: 75% of customer service problems caused by DRM

Next Story

20x DVD burners may become mainstream in 4Q 2007

17 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

One major disaster and all 550 souls lost !. I am ex 707 pilot and believe me this aircraft no matter how sophisticated it is it is vulnerbale to weather related, or technical glitches that is very likely to occur because of numerous cables and controls that has to co-ordinate in a predifined order. One man at the controls cannot monitor the functionality of all of them. He has to rely on the feed back from the computers, as the entire equipement is fully computerized, and it is not judicious as a flyer to rely on them completely. One has to go with the gut feeling, you know what is wrong by the feel of it and not by computer telling you what is really wrong. I have flown millions of miles with the most versatile aircraft ever made the Boeing 707's. Boeings are the most reliable planes to fly, as it allows a lot of the controls under the man under the controls. I always have the lives of people in the cabin unaware of the situations the cockpit crew have to go through to get them to their destinations on time and safely beating every odds with the changing weather patterns. The weather chart given by ATC is not always correct and cannot be relied on. This aircraft is not safe enough. I have done a lot of research on the Boeing's newest 787 and I am fascinated by its perfomance. I have no connection with Boeing co. This is just my personal opinion. The next time you fly you are safe on a any of the aircrafts manufacture by Boeing. Air Buses are pretty good, but rely heavily on computers, meaning too much automation and very little for human control.

Capt. Purushotham

A lot of carriers have cancelled orders due to the long delays. Some cargo companies that need the size are switching over to the new 747-8 that has the newer technology engines from the 787. I think the A380 launch and the airports that spent the money on accomodating it will wind up with the short end of the stick.

And you thought the current waits to board/depart a plane were bad... With a plane this size, jeesh, don't even want to speculate.

yikes that thing is huge... 800 passengers tho.. i guess it would be cheaper to operate vs 3 300 passenger ones. I was reading about the Boeing 787 not so long ago and man that thing was sweet too...

If it wasn't for massive European bureaucracy, this might have been done a long time ago.

Airbus is a sign of the failures and incompetence of the European model, Boeing is representative of the US economic model ... which one is winning? You decide.

If it wasn't for massive European bureaucracy, this might have been done a long time ago.

Airbus is a sign of the failures and incompetence of the European model, Boeing is representative of the US economic model ... which one is winning? You decide.

Are you joking? Although suffering in recently, Airbus has generally been doing fairly well in the medium/long term history. Boeing has benefited from subsidies.

Some would dispute that, but no one could dispute that the A380 problems have been technical, not bureaucratic.

winmoose said,
Are you joking? Although suffering in recently, Airbus has generally been doing fairly well in the medium/long term history. Boeing has benefited from subsidies.

Some would dispute that, but no one could dispute that the A380 problems have been technical, not bureaucratic.


FYI - Airbus has benefited from gov't subsidizes though-out the years FAR more than Boeing. The exception being the Boeing salad days during WWII... Airbus wasn't around then so you really can't compare, but Hell, Airbus was even started out as a quasi-government entity. You are right, though, about the delay of the A380 being a result of technical issues. Airbus and Boeing use pretty much the same sub-contractors for their plane parts and labor, so the same delays could have as easily happen to either one.

No US-based airline has placed an order, but at least one leasing company has. However, expected 2007 deliveries have been deferred to 2013.

I hate to say it, but I think Stonecipher was right in pushing ahead with the 787 over a direct competitor to the A380. At the current pacing, the 787 might well make it into the sky with fare-paying customers before Airbus can get shakedowns completed.

Martin Blank said,
No US-based airline has placed an order, but at least one leasing company has.

There aren't too many with a need for this size of a plane. Do you know if that leasing company is Evergreen? If so, I thought they had made a total commitment to the 787 Dreamliner cargo.

A little strange that they are making a US debut at this time. The last I heard, no US based airline has placed any orders yet for the A380. Does anyone know if that has changed? I have family members who are in the airline & airplane manufacturing industries and the murmurs around this plane is that it's a big fat white elephant. If true, then it's very sad. The plane has some great technology and features.

lbmouse said,
A little strange that they are making a US debut at this time. The last I heard, no US based airline has placed any orders yet for the A380. Does anyone know if that has changed? I have family members who are in the airline & airplane manufacturing industries and the murmurs around this plane is that it's a big fat white elephant. If true, then it's very sad. The plane has some great technology and features.

That doesnt mean the international flights cant land an A380 in the USA, which that is what this is just an international flight making its landing in the USA

neufuse said,
That doesnt mean the international flights cant land an A380 in the USA, which that is what this is just an international flight making its landing in the USA

Except that according to the press (and even Airbus), this is nothing more than a promotional tour. With United and Northwest trying to get through bankruptcy proceedings and FedEx and UPS making commitments to the new Boeing 747 for trans-continental cargo flights (replace aging 747s and MD-11s), there really isn't anyone left in the US to buy the thing.

lbmouse said,
With United and Northwest trying to get through bankruptcy proceedings

United emerged from bankruptcy in January 2006. It doesn't mean that it's in shape to buy A380 aircraft, but it's operated at a profit for three of the four quarters since then, and the one down quarter -- Q4 '06 -- was only off $60 million.