The first Airbus A400M new generation airlifter for the Royal Malaysian Air Force is rapidly taking shape at the Airbus Defence and Space final assembly line in Seville, Spain. All the fully equipped major sections including the wing, tailplane, cockpit, fuselage and landing-gear have been joined ready for ground-testing. This aircraft will be delivered in the first quarter of 2015, followed by two more later in the year and the fourth and final aircraft in 2016.
The A400M can carry heavy and outsize loads over intercontinental distances at jet-like speeds while retaining true tactical capability to use short and unprepared runways, and can also act as an air-to-air refueller. The first group of Malaysian pilot trainees are already undergoing instruction at the Airbus Defence and Space International Training Centre and will be joined by maintenance engineers and technicians in the coming weeks.