Monday, May 4, 2009

1st China-assembled A320 to be tested in May

The first Airbus A320 aircraft assembled in China is scheduled to make a test flight in May.

The flight will be held at Tianjin Airport, where a new runway is being built to facilitate trial flights of all A320 aircraft, Feng Zhijiang, head of the administrative committee of the Tianjin Free Trade Zone, said.
Five A320s are currently being put together at the Tianjin final assembly line, the first Airbus production facility outside Europe.

Several major parts of the aircraft were put together in Hamburg, Germany, before being transported to Tianjin for final assembly, Feng said.

"Twelve more A320s will be assembled in Tianjin and delivered next year," he said.

"They will incorporate some locally made parts, including the wings and fuselage. Assembly of the major parts will be done here in Tianjin."

The Airbus A320 final assembly line in Tianjin opened in September as the company's third general assembly line. The other two are in France and Germany. The Tianjin facility is used for assembling A319s and A320s.
The first Airbus A320 plane assembled in China's northern city Tianjin is due to be delivered to the domestic Sichuan Airlines. The second Tianjin-manufacturered A320 is to be delivered to the domestic Hainan Airlines, and the third to Shenzhen Airlines. The remainder of the eight planes on the delivery schedule for this year were either for China Eastern Airlines or Hainan Airlines.

According to a report by the Tianjin Airport-based Industrial Zone, China has become the world's second largest aviation market after the United States. The country is estimated to need 2,670 passenger planes in the next 20 years.

Originally Posted: China Business Daily
Author: Angulo Fu