The first Airbus aircraft manufactured in the USA made its first test flight on Monday, March 22, 2016.
The A321 took off from the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley in Mobile, Alabama, USA, and performed various tests on systems, engines and structural performance. The flight lasted approximately 3 hours 30 mins.
Following the maiden flight, the aircraft will go through a few more weeks in final production before being delivered to JetBlue.
The A321 is the largest member of the A320 family. It has a range of up to 7,400km (4,000 nautical miles), and is able to fly longer routes, such as from Europe to the USA.
Airbus began constructing the US$600m manufacturing plant in Mobile in 2013 after selecting Alabama’s ‘Port City’ as the location. State and local governments provided more than US$158m in incentives for the factory, which opened in September 2015 and is expected to employ approximately 1,000 workers by the end of 2017.
The plant will produce A319 and A320 aircraft as well as the A321.
March 22, 2016