Iberia becomes the first airline to operate upgraded version of A350-900


Madrid - Iberia presented its new A350-900 with improved aerodynamics at the Fitur (Feria International de Turismo), International Tourism Fair held in Madrid from 17 to 21 January.

The improved A350-900 has a reinforced landing gear, and the latest technology inside the cockpit, incorporating all the systems including a more advanced transfer of information.

The A350-900 will also offer wider aisles and seats in Business Class to provide more passenger space. The upgrades also include more sensitive and larger HD touchscreens from 15.4 to 18 inches for easier use of the in-flight entertainment system.

The Iberia Airbus A350s will have 31 business class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration , as well as high-speed satellite internet connectivity. The A350-900 will fly its first long-haul route from Madrid to New York JFK in August 2018. This year, Iberia will also launch flights from Madrid to San Francisco and Managua (Nicaragua).

Iberia also expects traffic growth on its long-haul routes to Japan, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Puerto Rico and Brazil. The Spanish carrier aims to add 8% seating capacity this year compared to 2017.

Iberia has ordered 16 A350-900s, configured to accommodate 31 passengers in Business Class, 24 in Premium and 293 in Economy, 348 seats in total. The new planes will replace the airline's A340s on its international routes by 2021.The first A350-900 is expected to arrive in June 2018.

The A350-900s are equipped with Rolls Royce Trent XWB-84 engines that provide about 30% less fuel consumption than the A340-600.