The first of eight Qantas Airbus A380s being repainted in the airline’s new livery by Emirates Engineering has arrived back in Australia.
Operating as QF6012, the Qantas A380 VH-OQF landed in Sydney a little after 0700 on Wednesday morning, following its 14-hour journey from Dubai.
The aircraft had been in Dubai since Saturday, March 24, being repainted at the Emirates Aircraft Appearance Centre.
It was announced in February Emirates Engineering had won a contract to repaint eight of Qantas’s 12 Airbus A380s in the new livery.
The new livery, launched in October 2016, features a “streamlined”, pawless kangaroo on the tail of the aircraft and a new font. A silver band also extends from the tail to the rear of the fuselage, among other changes.
The first aircraft to feature the new livery, Airbus A330-300 VH-QPJ, was revealed on October 27 2016 at Qantas’s Mascot jet base.
It is only the fifth livery Qantas has introduced since the kangaroo first appeared on Qantas aircraft in 1944. The most recent livery update was in 2007, just prior to Qantas introducing the A380 into service in 2008.
Qantas’s first A380 to be repainted in Dubai comes less than a month after the airline ended its own flights to its alliance partner Emirates’ biggest hub in favour of nonstop Perth-London Heathrow services and a resumption of a Sydney-Singapore-London Heathrow rotation.
“Updating branding on aircraft will be sequenced with scheduled re-paints, to be completed in time for the airline’s centenary in 2020,” Qantas said in October 2016.
The A380 followed repainting of Airbus A330s in Victorville, California, Boeing 737-800s in Seletar, Singapore and at Flying Colours in Townsville, plus Dash 8 Q300s and Q400s at Flying Colours in Townsville. Some Fokker 100s have also been repainted in Seletar and with Douglas Aerospace in Wagga Wagga.
Of course, all of Qantas’s four Boeing 787-9s have come straight from the factory with the new livery.