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PICTURES: Korean's first A380 takes deliveries almost to 50

Korean Air has formally taken delivery of its first Airbus A380, becoming the sixth carrier to operate the double-deck aircraft.

The Seoul-based operator accepted the jet, MSN35, during a ceremony at Toulouse.

Korean Air's A380 brings the global fleet to 49 aircraft.

Its entire upper deck has been configured with business-class accommodation, with 94 lie-flat seats, and the aircraft has just 407 seats in total.

Korean Air chairman Yang Ho Cho, speaking in Toulouse, said this made it "the most special A380 so far".

The aircraft also features a specialised 'showcase' of duty-free products displayed as part of its interior arrangement, with a dedicated cabin crew member to assist with service.

"Our customers can browse our selection of duty-free items," said chairman Cho.

Korean Air becomes the third airline to put an Engine Alliance GP7200-powered A380 into service, behind Emirates and Air France who have 20 between them.

Korean A380

Engine Alliance has secured agreements to fit the GP7200 to 124 of the 220 A380s for which a powerplant selection has been made. Rolls-Royce's Trent 900 has the other 96, with 14 A380s' engines undecided.

Emirates remains the largest A380 operator with 15, followed by Singapore Airlines with 11 and Qantas with 10. The other two operators, Lufthansa and Air France, have seven and five respectively.

Korean Air has ordered 10 A380s, and plans to fly the type initially on services within Asia but expanding to North America as the fleet enlarges. Korean carrier Asiana Airlines has also ordered six A380s.

Korean A380

Below is video from the aircraft's roll-out following painting at Airbus's Hamburg facility.


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