British Airways today became the first UK airline to take delivery of an Airbus A380 superjumbo – the world’s largest passenger plane.
BA’s first A380 touched down at Heathrow where it was shown off alongside another recently-delivered aircraft, a Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
It is the first of 12 superjumbos ordered by BA, with passenger services due to start this autumn.
BA is configuring the massive, 238ft-long A380 to take 469 passengers, slightly fewer than some of the other superjumbo-operating airlines.
Those aboard the BA plane will be flying on an aircraft that is 79ft high, with wings that are 54 per cent larger than those of the Boeing 747 jumbo jet.
The surface of the superjumbo is covered in three layers of paint weighing around 500kg.
If all the wiring in the A380 is laid end to end it would stretch from Edinburgh to London, BA said.
The A380’s arrival follows the delivery last week of the first two of BA’s Dreamliners. A second superjumbo is due to arrive in September.
BA chief executive Keith Williams said: “We are proud to be leading the way in Europe in operating these aircraft types.”