Grrreat Grizzlies!

Now here’s something that you don’t see every day: pictures showing all five of Airbus Military’s A400M development aircraft “turning and burning” together.

side 560.jpgThe company just released a couple of images showing its entire “Grizzly” fleet getting ready to take off from Toulouse, France, and I’m guessing that air-to-air shots might also be following before too long (see below for an update on this).

front 560.jpgThis is good news for the A400M programme, and follows my report from earlier today that MSN6 had flown its first six flights during a projected 300h period of function and reliability testing.

A subsequent image of the formation in flight shows a couple of interesting things (well, for me at least): MSN1 at the far left still has the measuring equipment fitted to support recently completed natural icing tests, while MSN2 is carrying underwing hose and drogue refuelling pods and has an aerodynamic shape added to its tail ramp to simulate the presence of a fuselage refuelling unit.

five 560.jpg

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