German government orders 3 Airbus A350

Photo: © Clément Alloing

The government of Germany has placed a firm order for three Airbus A350-900(CJ), making it the first government customer for the aircraft type.

Delivery of the first of three aircraft is scheduled for 2020, while the other two jets are due to be delivered in 2022.

This order was first reported in February this year, when German defence secretary Ursula von der Leyen confirmed that the country’s air force is looking to replace its current two Airbus A340-300 governmental jets with new A350-900 aircraft. The announcement came after a series of technical issues with the old, ex-Lufthansa A340s that sparked controversy in Germany.

All three new aircraft will be equipped with a VIP cabin by Airbus and can be used for government, troop transport and even medical evacuation roles.

A price tag for this firm order has not been named. The list price for a regular Airbus A350-900 is US $317.2 million (€276.9 million). However, VIP-configuration and advanced systems (such as additional safety and communication systems) could easily add between $115 million and $170 million to the purchase cost.

The ACJ350-900 (“Airbus Corporate Jet”) is the business jet variant of the standard A350-900 and is capable of flying up to 20,550 kilometres (11,100 nm), according to the European aircraft manufacturer.