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Airbus aims for first A330-800 final assembly by year-end

Airbus has embarked on production of major structures for the first A330-800, the smaller of the two members of the re-engined A330neo family.

Just one customer, Hawaiian Airlines, has A330-800s on order. The carrier is taking six of the type.

The airframer states that components already undergoing manufacture include the fuselage sections being built in Hamburg, the centre wing-box in Nantes, and titanium pylons in Toulouse for the type's Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines.

Korean-built sharklet wing-tips are also under construction for attachment to the wing, which is undergoing installation at Airbus's high-lift systems plant Bremen.

Airbus is aiming to commence final assembly of the A330-800 by the end of this year, ahead of first flight in 2018.

The airframer has yet to conduct the maiden flight of the larger variant, the A330-900, development of which has suffered several months of delays. The first -900 has recently been transferred to the Airbus flight-test division.

Airbus has total orders for 210 A330neos of which the -900 accounts for 204.

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