Qantas A350-1000 in longer range version

Qantas’ A350-1000 Sunrise jets will only be delivered in mid-2026

The delay is due to necessary modifications to the extra fuel tank of the Airbus aircraft that will be used on the world’s longest routes

Qantas has postponed the start of the Project Sunrise, which aims to direct connections from Australia to destinations in the United States and Europe, from 2025 to 2026.

The reason involves the redesign of an extra fuel tank that will equip its new Airbus A350-1000.

The European manufacturer confirmed the delay, claiming that EASA, the European civil aviation authority, requested a new project to install the central fuel tank that will allow the widebody to offer sufficient autonomy to go from Sydney to New York non-stop, for example.

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Qantas A350-1000 (Qantas)

“We have to redesign the central tank, the extra fuel tank, which will enable the Sunrise mission, and that’s what explains the change,” Christian Scherer, CEO of Airbus’ commercial aircraft business, told Reuters.

Range of 8,700 nm

Qantas chose Airbus as the project’s aircraft supplier in 2019 after evaluating the Boeing 777X as well.

In 2022, the Australian carrier placed an order for 12 A350-1000s that will feature differentiated services so that passengers and crew can stay for around 20 hours.

Qantas A350-1000 first class (Qantas)

The A350-1000 of the Project Sunrise will be capable of flying distances of more than 16,000 km (8,700 nm) with 234 passengers on board.

To achieve this extra range, the aircraft must increase its maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) to carry 159,000 liters of fuel.

Currently, Qantas flights to New York and London have to make a technical stopover for refueling, making the journey long and tiring for passengers.


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