EADS's specialist modification division EFW has received its first Airbus A320, from AerCap, at its site in Dresden ahead of the twinjet's passenger-to-freighter (P2F) conversion.

The prototype aircraft, serial number 211, is equipped with CFM International CFM56 engines. It was built in 1991 and operated as a passenger aircraft with carriers including Air France and Tunisair, accumulating 35,000h.

EADS EFW says the aircraft is being stored and will undergo design and fuel tests over the next few months.

It will undergo initial conversion work in November. The aircraft is the first of up to 30 A320 conversions disclosed by AerCap and Airbus Freighter Conversion in 2008.

"Early delivery of the prototype will support the engineering teams to prepare the first P2F of a fly-by-wire aircraft," says Airbus

AerCap said last October that it had placed the first three converted Airbus A320 freighters with West Atlantic. The European cargo operator will become launch operator for the A320P2F conversion by taking an initial three aircraft on lease from AerCap with deliveries between 2012 and mid-2013, with the option of a further four aircraft by 2015.

Source: Flight International