The 6th Airbus BelugaXL takes its maiden flight

Airbus’ sixth and final BelugaXL aircraft has taken its first flight today at its plant in Toulouse, France. With this, Airbus has successfully concluded its’ project to replace its older Beluga fleet for oversized cargo.

In an update on LinkedIn Airbus said it’s a big week for our BelugaXL as our 6th and final gentle giant takes to the skies for the first time today. We also celebrate the 5 year anniversary since the first flight of our first outsized super transporter.

“We can’t wait to see her join her XL siblings flying aircraft sections between Airbus production sites and supporting outsized cargo missions,” the company said.

The 6th Beluga XL soaring in the sky

The BelugaXL, which is to replace the older A300-600ST Beluga fleet is a heavily-modified A330. It is designed to fly aero structures between the airframer’s manufacturing facilities.

Airbus first operated five Belugas and originally had plans to build five BelugaXLs. However, later it opted to extend production to six of the type.

All six aircraft are fitted with Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines.

Airbus’s first BelugaXL conducted its maiden flight almost exactly five years ago, in July 2018.

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