Airbus Military's second production example of the A400M performed its flight debut on 7 June, little more than a week before the type's high-profile appearance at the Paris air show.
Flown from Seville, Spain, aircraft MSN8 is scheduled for handover "in the third quarter of the year", the company says. Its delivery will follow that of lead aircraft MSN7, which is due to achieve entry into service with the French air force "in the coming weeks". The type will be operated from Orleans air base in national service.
A total of 174 A400Ms are on order for European launch customers Belgium (seven), France (50), Germany (53), Luxembourg (one), Spain (27), Turkey (10) and the UK (22), plus export buyer Malaysia (four).
One of the French air force's future airlifters is due to participate in the opening flypast at Le Bourget on 17 June, before being placed on static display at the show.