Airbus A300

Airbus A300

 

Airbus A300 - World's first twin-engine airliner with two passenger aisles
The A300 was the first product launched by Airbus, entering service in 1972 as the world's very first twin-engine airliner with two passenger aisles. The Airbus A300 was considered extremely advanced and innovative when it was launched; using the latest in technology, and influencing subsequent airline design. There have been over 500 produced, with the A300 operating for mainly Asian airlines, such as Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Japan Air Services and Philippine Airlines, as well as FedEx Express and UPS Airlines. The company saw considerable growth well into the 1980's with the aircraft, however, in 2007, Airbus stopped production of its A300 completely. Today, more than 80 operators still use the aircraft for both scheduled and charter flights worldwide.  
 
Airbus A300 - Pioneer product from Airbus, launched in 1972
The inception of the A300 heralded the launch of the company, Airbus, and established Europe's presence in the airline market. The plan for a large-capacity short-range airliner was conceived in the 1960's and initiated by American Airlines, who were looking for an alternative to the Boeing and Douglas aircraft, for short to medium-length routes in the USA. British, French and German governments formatted the idea for a twin-engine passenger aircraft with a two-aisle configuration accommodating up to 225 people, which operated at 30 percent lower operating costs than the Boeing, and lowered seat costs in the process. Airbus Industrie was created from European manufacturers and aerospace companies, and on 28th October 1972, the Airbus A300 completed its maiden flight. Air France was the first airline to introduce the Airbus A300 into its service, operating a flight between London and Paris in 1974. Production of derivative models A300B2 and B4 followed shortly after. 
 
Airbus A300 - Still in operation, however none made since 2007
The Airbus A300 can typically accommodate 266 passengers, and operates on a two-class system. Production of the A300 ended in July 2007, with a last aircraft delivery to FedEx, however the company has pledged to continue servicing the Airbus A300 for the next 15 years, and will convert some older aircraft into cargo planes.

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