Airbus has fitted the Rolls-Royce Trent XWB powerplants to its first flying A350 prototype, and is also installing the aircraft's auxiliary power unit.

A350 MSN1 is to undergo ground tests and painting over the next few weeks before being handed over to the airframer's flight-test team for ground runs.

Airbus has yet to finalise a maiden flight date, simply saying it is aiming to fly the twinjet "in the summer".

"With the installation of its engines and also the auxiliary power unit, MSN1 becomes essentially a 'completed' aircraft," says the airframer.

Airbus adds that the engines, which were certificated in February, have been undergoing preparation for installation with UTC Aerospace Systems. The APU, designated the HGT1700, has been developed by Honeywell.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news