Malaysia Airlines will ditch all of its Airbus A380s by 2018, just six years after the beleaguered carrier took delivery of its first superjumbo.
The A380s will remain in the fleet primarily for the airlines' twice-daily flights between Kuala Lumpur and London until the four double-deckers assigned to that route can all be replaced with the fuel-efficient Airbus A350, outgoing Malaysia Airlines CEO Christoph Mueller told Aviation Daily.
Mueller added that an A350 is also likely to start flying to Auckland or Tokyo.
PREVIOUS | Malaysia Airlines will fly its new Airbus A350 on routes to London and across Asia following their delivery from October 2017.
Four of the advanced fuel-efficient jets will carry MAS stripe by the middle of 2018, and CEO Christoph Mueller has already flagged an interest in adding more "in order to reach a critical fleet size, allowing standby aircraft for any scheduled maintenance and enabling future network expansion."
The seating and layout for Malaysia Airlines' A350s has already been finalised and is expected to top out at business class – possibly using the same design as the airline's new A330 lie-flat business class seat (below) – and perhaps also include the extra-legroom 'economy plus' zone earmarked for the Airbus A380s.
"The aircraft will deliver great performance and is able to operate non-stop from Kuala Lumpur to London and throughout Asia" Malaysia Airlines has said.
The Malaysian flag-carrier will continue flying its six Airbus A380 flagships but has retired all of its ageing Boeing 777-200 jets on the back of a recent alliance with Emirates, which the airline says "will contribute to Malaysia Airlines’ fleet consolidation."
More Airbus A350 stories on Australian Business Traveller
- Revealed: Airbus' innovative A350 first class cabin concept
- Inside Singapore Airlines' all-new Airbus A350
- Singapore Airlines confirms Airbus A350 'medium-range' config
- Singapore Airlines: 'all-new' business class for ultra long-range A350
- Inside the Airbus A350's secret loft where pilots and cabin crew sleep
- Inside Cathay Pacific's all-new Airbus A350
- Review: Finnair Airbus A350 business class
Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT
About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.