Boeing has begun final assembly of the first 787-9. The newest member of the 787 family began taking shape on schedule on May 30 in Everett.
The 787-9 fuselage is stretched by 6 metres, carrying 40 more passengers an additional 300nm (555km) while using 20 per cent less fuel than similarly sized airplanes, Boeing promises.
The vertical stabiliser on the 787-9 reflects the manufacturer’s new livery, a refreshed look for the Boeing family of aircraft that started with the 747-8 and evolved with the 737 MAX. The prominent number designator on the tail helps distinguish various models within the same product family.
Boeing will build the first three 787-9s on its Temporary Surge Line in Everett to allow for smoother integration of the 787-9 into the production system while continuing to ramp up production across the 787 program.
First flight of the 787-9 is scheduled for the second half of 2013, with first delivery to launch customer Air New Zealand set for early 2014. Twenty customers have ordered 355 787-9s, accounting for 40 percent of all 787 orders.