This evening, Malaysia Airlines will embark into new era. After nearly forty years of national carrier as Malaysia Airlines (on 1 Oct 1972 it was then known as Malaysia Airlines System or MAS), a new intercontinental super wide body will enter the service and bring upon a whole new product range to the 5 star premium carrier.
This evening (2130hrs Malaysian time), the first Malaysia Airlines A380-800 bearing the tail number 9M-MNA will officially leave Airbus facility in Toulouse after being handed over to the national carrier. Group CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya and his senior managers will officially take delivery of the pioneer A380 for Malaysia Airlines, witness by Malaysian Ambassador to France Jen (B) Tan Sri Aziz Zainal, Director General of DCA Dato’ Azharuddin and several representatives of Ministry of Finance and Khazanah.
It is scheduled to arrive in KL International Airport 1030hrs on Friday 29 June 2012.
15 minutes to midnight on 1 July, this aircraft would leave for London Heathrow for the inaugural service on MH 002. It would be a dawn of a new era for Malaysia Airlines.
Malaysia Airlines first operated wide bodied aircrafts for KUL-LHR sector with the arrival of DC-10-30 in 1976. It embarked into a new era when Rolls Royce power RB211 B747-200 aircrafts started serving the same route from April 1982. A GE powered B747-300 joined the route by 1986. By the year 1990, Malaysia Airlines saw a new era when B747-400 came into the service and automatically enable KUL to serve directly to LHR without a technical stopover in West Asia. At its peak, the PW4056 powered B747-400s were plying the KUL-LHR sector 18 times a week.
The new A380 service is expected to bring Malaysia Airlines to greater heights as not only it is the lowest operating cost per seat for intercontinental flights, but also a whole new range of products being introduced such as fully flat Golden Club Class and suites for First Class. The wider and extra leg room for the economy class would bring about greater comfort.
The seating configuration for Malaysia Airlines’ A380 is 8 First Class, 66 Golden Club Class and 420 Economy. This pioneer aircraft would be joined by a second A380 in two weeks time. By mid August, daily MH002/001 flights would be on this type. It expected that A380 to serve Sydney/Melbourne routes, on top of the popular Far East destination such as Tokyo Narita.