British Airways receives first of a dozen Airbus superjumbo jets

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BRITISH Airways took delivery of its maiden Airbus A380s yesterday, becoming the first airline in the country to fly the world’s biggest commercial aircraft.

BA plans to fly a dozen of the planes on long-haul routes at Heathrow, as part of a £10bn fleet upgrade.

“These aircraft are the start of a new era for British Airways,” said chief executive Keith Williams, noting the carrier had not introduced any new long-haul planes for 17 years.

Airbus boss Fabrice Bregier said the delivery was a proud moment for the firm. “It is a special day for UK industry too, as a significant proportion of this amazing aircraft was designed and built at Airbus’ UK sites in Filton and Broughton, as well as at our many partners’ facilities across the country.”

The company has taken 262 firm orders from 20 clients for the plane, which is competing for sales with Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner model.