Air New Zealand (Auckland) has announced it has placed an order for 10 Airbus A320neo aircraft (above), one A320ceo and three A321neo aircraft (above, image via Airbus). The signing ceremony took place at the IATA annual meeting today in Doha, Qatar.
In other news, on May 29 Air New Zealand’s first Boeing 787-9 (ZK-NZE) (above) took to the air for the first time, successfully completing its first production test flight in the skies above Seattle, Washington.
Copyright Photo: Daniel Gorun/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-9 ZK-NZE (msn 34334) taxies at Paine Field near Everett, WA.
The aircraft, which is in Air New Zealand’s signature black livery, is currently in the final phases of the delivery process before being formally handed over to the airline as the new owner.
Air New Zealand is the launch customer for the Boeing 787-9 and has 10 of these stretch versions of the 787 on order.
Copyright Photo: Air New Zealand/Boeing. ZK-NZE departs from PAE on its first flight.
This first test flight is known as a B1 flight where the two pilots put the aircraft through its paces thoroughly exercising its systems to verify performance while at the same time the functionality of every aspect of the cabin is tested in-flight.
The distinctive black aircraft departed from Paine Field airport north of Seattle at 1:45 pm (1345) local time. It reached an altitude of 11,800 meters (39,000 feet) and an airspeed of 360 knots which is standard for a B1 flight and returned to Paine Field three hours and ten minutes later.