Airbus A321XLR departs on maiden flight

Airbus A321XLR aircraft
The Airbus A321XLR rolled out of the paintshop in May 2022. Photo: © Airbus

The Airbus A321XLR has successfully departed on its first flight on Wednesday, June 15th.

At around 11:00 am local time, the brand new jet left Airbus’ production site at Hamburg Finkenwerder (IATA-Code: XFW). The A321XLR with registration F-WXLR performs a 5-hour test flight over Northern Germany before returning to Hamburg.

The Airbus A321XLR is a further extended range version of the A321neo family aircraft. According to the European aircraft manufacturer, the new variant of the type can fly up to 4,700 nm / 8,700 km. The abbreviation ‘XLR’ stands for Extra Long Range.

Since its first presentation at Paris Air Show in 2019, several airlines around the world have opted for the XLR-version. Most recently, Air Canada ordered 26 A321XLR jets in March 2022. The customer list includes multiple large airlines, such as United Airlines and Qantas.

It was not immediately clear when Airbus expects to receive certification for the A321XLR. According to a Reuters report from June 14th, the company had recently pushed back the entry into service to early 2024 and still has to deal with regulators’ concerns regarding the fuel tank design.