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Airbus schedules maiden flight of A350

Keywords: Tags  Airbus, A350 XWB, European Aeronautic Defence & Space, Rolls-Royce Trent XWB, maien flight, Frank Haflich

LOS ANGELES — Airbus SAS has scheduled the maiden flight of its A350 XWB airliner for June 14, in time for next week’s Paris Air Show.

Airbus SAS said the new airliner, a rival to Chicago-based Boeing Co.’s 787 Dreamliner, will take off, "weather conditions permitting," from the Toulouse-Blagnac airport in southwest France. The flight, which follows the initial run of the plane’s Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines (, June 5), is "on track" with the program schedule, Airbus said.

While Airbus has been reported to be aiming for a flyby during next week’s aerospace industry show, a company spokeswoman in Herndon, Va., said this "has not yet been determined."

Toulouse-based Airbus, a unit of Leiden, Netherlands-based European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. NV, has 613 firm orders for the A350, which cost $15 billion to develop and is expected to enter service in 2014. The twin-aisle aircraft, which will come in three versions seating 270 to 350 passengers, is said to consume 25 percent less fuel than the previous generation of airliners.

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