Hot on the heels of South American carrier LAN, Air India has become the fifth airline to take delivery of the Boeing B787 Dreamliner, with the aircraft set to touch down in Delhi on Saturday (September 8).
The Indian carrier has a total of 27 Dreamliners on order, with initial aircraft being configured with a total of 256 seats.
The Contour Aura business class offering features 18 seats in a 2-2-2 layout, with a seat pitch of 74 inches, while the 238 Webber 5751 economy seats is configured 3-3-3, with a seat pitch of 33 inches.
The delivery ends several months of negotiations between Air India and Boeing, with the carrier seeking compensation from the manufacturer over delays to the aircraft’s delivery schedule.
Air India had previously planned for the B787’s first international flight to be between Mumbai and London in August (see online news June 6).
It’s not yet clear when the aircraft will now enter commercial service, or on which route, although in a statement the carrier said that “The 787 has the range and capability to allow Air India to deploy the Dreamliner on many routes including the Middle East, Europe, Asia and Australia”.
The delivery to Air India follows LAN’s inauguration of the Dreamliner into its fleet last week (see online news September 3).
Japanese carrier ANA was the launch customer for the B787, followed by fellow Japanese carrier JAL earlier this year, and Ethiopian Airlines last month (see online news August 16).
United is also scheduled to take delivery of its first Dreamliner aircraft later this month, and plans to temporarily roster the aircraft onto its Houston-Heathrow route in February 2013 (see online news August 23).
Report by Mark Caswell