Portland - The first Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft for the Air Italy has come out of the paint shop in Portland, Oregon, before going into service on May 1st on domestic routes from Milan.

Posted on the social networks by the Italian company, the photos of the MAX 8 registered EI-GFY show the new identity and livery unveiled last February. This first of the twenty 737 MAX 8 ordered will make the commercial debut on May 1st on routes between Milan-Malpensa and Rome, Palermo, Catania, Lamezia-Terme, Naples.

The cabin configuration of the new device has not been announced yet, but the seven 737-800 of Air Italy are configured to accommodate 189 passengers in one class.

Air Italy aims to acquire 50 aircraft by 2022, including five Airbus A330-200 (24 + 223) from the fleet of its shareholder Qatar Airways.

From May 2019, thirty 787-8 Dreamliner will join the fleet and will gradually replace the A330s.

Last year, Qatar Airways acquired 49% of AQA Holding, the new parent company of Air Italy, formerly Meridiana. From its bases in Milan-Malpensa Air Italy plans a series of new medium and long-haul routes.

On September 9 there will be four weekly rotations between Milan and Bangkok, in direct competition with Thai Airways. New York and Miami routes were already announced, and others destinations will be Mumbai, Havana, Dakar, Lagos, and Accra in late October.

According to Air Italy President Francesco Violante, the company is expected to carry 10 million passengers in 2022, on a network of 50 destinations.

Air Italy first 737 MAX 8 with new livery