Virgin Atlantic Airways has confirmed an order for 10 Airbus A340-600s, worth approximately $1.9 billion.

It will be the launch customer for that model, with the first aircraft entering service in June 2002.

Four aircraft will be delivered between June and October with another six entering service by 2006.

They will be equipped with Rolls-Royce Trent 500 engines. The A340-600 will seat 319 passengers, a 25% increase in capacity per aircraft compared with the airline's current A340-300 fleet, which will be replaced by the new plane.

Commenting on the forthcoming delivery, Richard Branson, chairman of Virgin Atlantic, calls it a "phenomenal new aircraft, and an indication of our growing confidence in the increasing demand for long-haul air travel."

Source: Flight Daily News