Airbus has completed the initial assembly work on its first A321neo at its German Hamburg Finkenwerder plant.

The aircraft, MSN6673, has been rolled off the assembly line and is being transferred for installation of flight-test equipment.

It will be fitted with Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines but Airbus says that this will not happen until the technical issue which has halted PW-powered A320neo flights is resolved.

Airbus says that the fitting of the test equipment will take a few weeks and then the aircraft will perform a ferry flight to Toulouse to be integrated into the test campaign. It has yet to indicate a date for the maiden flight.

The test regime for the A321neo will be adapted because its wing differs from that on the A320neo and A319neo.

Airbus will have two A321neo test aircraft, one for each engine option. The aircraft will be offered with the PW1100G or the CFM International Leap-1A.

The airframer has formally listed five weight variants for the A321neo but it is aiming to develop a longer-range version, with a maximum take-off weight of 97t.

Customer had ordered a total of 811 A321neos by May 2015, the airframer states. Airbus expects the A321neo to enter service towards the end of 2016.

Source: Cirium Dashboard