First Buyer For the Airbus A380 'Flying Palace'

First Buyer For the Airbus A380 'Flying Palace'
The Airbus A380, though plagued by delays, is a jumbo jet on steroids, the two-deck A380 can carry 550 passengers in a typical three-class seating arrangement with a total capacity of 840 people.

Airbus hasreceived its first preliminary order from an unidentified customer for aVIP-configured A380 ultra-large airliner.

Details ofthe arrangement are vague, but Airbus chief operating officer for customersJohn Leahy told Flight's online news service Air Transport Intelligence that hehas a letter of intent to supply a VIP version of the jet. "The problem is that when a VIP customerwants one, he wants it tomorrow," he says. "He doesn't want to haveto wait."

Leahy willnot say whether, or when, the agreement is likely to be confirmed and hasprovided no information about the nature or location of the potential customer.Airbus recently referred to the corporate version of the A380 as the "Flying Palace".

Meanwhile,investment company Petters Group Worldwide (PGW) has become the first US customer for the A318 Elite following its order for one aircraft.

Minneapolis,Minnesota-based PGW plans to use the aircraft for corporate flights within the USA, and to Asia and Europe.

The dealtakes the order book for Airbus's Corporate Jet family this year to nineaircraft.

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