Lufthansa Brings Airbus A350s to Munich to Retire Thirsty A340s

  • First batch of 10 jets out of 25 to be deployed in Bavaria
  • Deliveries will begin in December, running through mid-2018

Deutsche Lufthansa AG will deploy the first 10 of 25 Airbus Group SE A350 jetliners it has on order in Munich, allowing it to speed the retirement of aging and inefficient A340 aircraft.

The first of the A350-900s will arrive at the south German hub in December, with deliveries stretching through mid-2018, Lufthansa said Wednesday. The remaining 15 planes will be handed over by 2023, according to the carrier, which didn’t specify where they’ll be based.

The twin-turbine A350s will deliver a fuel saving of about 25 percent versus the A340, Lufthansa said. The company, which has its main hub in Frankfurt, is the second-biggest operator of the four-engine plane with 57 in its fleet, and the model accounts for almost three-quarters of long-haul flights in Munich.

Factoring in A380s and Boeing Co. 747 jumbos, some 70 percent of Lufthansa’s intercontinental fleet comprises four-engine planes, putting the carrier at a disadvantage when competing against carriers with more efficient aircraft.

Lufthansa’s Munich-based A350s will feature 293 seats, with 48 business berths, 21 in premium economy and 224 in coach. A denser configuration introduced later will accommodate 36 business travelers and 262 in coach, for a total of 319.