Lufthansa plans to take delivery of its first Boeing 747-8 on 23 April, ahead of entering revenue service with the German airline in May.

The German carrier has ordered 20 passenger-variant 747-8s to replace its 747-400s, of which the first was delivered in May 1989.

August Wilhelm Henningsen, chief executive of the airline's maintenance arm, Lufthansa Technik, tells Flightglobal Pro that the first aircraft would be delivered "around" 23 April.

The 747-8s will join the fleet at a rate of five per year until 2015.

The delivery of the fifth aircraft (RC021), which is to be registered D-ABYE, was scheduled for August at the point when it visited Frankfurt for ground equipment tests last December.

Lufthansa will configure the type with 386 passenger seats in a three-class layout, including a new business class.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news