PICTURE: First Lufthansa A380 nears completion

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German flag-carrier Lufthansa's first Airbus A380 is nearing completion at Toulouse, ahead of delivery planned for early next year.

While a final layout has yet to be disclosed the airline indicates that it will configure the aircraft with seating for around 550 passengers.

This figure, if confirmed, would exceed the density of Air France's A380s. Air France currently offers the highest capacity, with a 538-seat layout.

Lufthansa is to take delivery of the first aircraft, MSN038, currently bearing test registration F-WWSH, ahead of the 2010 summer schedule.

lh a380
 © Yannick Delamarre

It has still to disclose the network on which the double-deck jets will operate, but has already indicated that Frankfurt-New York is a leading candidate for the first route. The carrier has identified around 20 potential destinations.

Lufthansa has 15 A380s on order, with another five optioned, and the type is being fitted with Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines.