Two new milestones have been reached in Emirates’ fleet modernization program, with April seeing the completion of cabin updates for the final 10 Boeing 777-200LRs in its fleet – representing an investment of US$150 million – and the phasing out of the airline’s final two Boeing 777-300 ‘classic’ aircraft.
The B777-200LR project involved reconfiguring the aircraft from three to two cabin classes to accommodate wider business class seats in a 2-2-2 arrangement, as well as a complete overhaul of the economy class cabin. The conversion work was carried out at Emirates Engineering in Dubai, representing more than 160,000 hours of work – on average, each aircraft required 35 days to complete. The first Boeing 777-200LR in a new configuration entered commercial operations in March 2018, with the conversion of the remaining nine aircraft completed over the following 12 months – three months ahead of schedule.
As part of its fleet renewal program Emirates also retired the last two ‘classic’ Boeing 777-300 jets from the fleet, specifically A6-EMC, which has served the airline since February 2003, and A6 EMX, which was delivered in June 2003.
The next stage in Emirates’ fleet renewal program for 2019 includes the phasing out of a further seven older Boeing 777s and the commissioning of six new Airbus A380s.