Airbus has launched the longest range single-aisle aircraft produced so far, able to reach Miami and Delhi from London.
The A321XLR can fly 5,400 miles or roughly a 10-hour flight, carrying 180 to 220 passengers in a two-class layout including a lie-flat business class.
The aircraft is likely to prompt a swathe of orders from Asian airlines looking to start low-cost long-haul services to Europe, as it can also carry 244 passengers in a single class layout.
Extra fuel tanks on the aircraft mean it can fly 15% further than the current long-range version now being introduced on some transatlantic routes.
The XLR was launched at this week’s Paris Air Show. It is designed to out-perform the Boeing 757, now no longer produced, which airlines such as United use on some transatlantic services, particularly from UK regional airports.
Lebanon’s Middle East Airlines is due to be the launch customer for the XLR in 2023, which it says will allow it to expand more into Africa.