FARNBOROUGH: Airbus raising A350 MTOW to 272t

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Airbus is to offer a higher maximum take-off weight for its twin-engined A350-900, raising the capability by 4t to 272t.

A350 programme chief Didier Evrard confirmed the shift to Flightglobal during the Farnborough air show.

Airbus’s previous specifications for the A350-900 put the maximum take-off weight at 268t, with a maximum landing weight of 205t and a maximum zero-fuel weight of 192t.

While Evrard had stated in June that the aircraft weight was 3.3t above specification, he says the airframer has “mitigated the weight situation” with the manufacturer’s empty weight, by offering the greater performance capability.

“The potential of the [airframe] structure has been demonstrated,” he says.

Evrard says the higher take-off weight will be available on the initial aircraft delivered to Qatar Airways. The first A350 will be handed over in the fourth quarter of this year.

He says that, following flight-testing of the type, Airbus is confident of "meeting its commitments" to customers regarding the A350's performance. "That's clearly the most important point," he says.

Airbus has been aiming for a maximum take-off weight of 308t for its stretched variant, the A350-1000. It is unclear whether this capability will be similarly adjusted.