At a time when the A380 is starting to disappear from some airlines' fleets, it's joining the crowd at Japan's ANA airline, and with a spectacular paint job.
The first of three planes in ANA's order has now rolled out of the Airbus paint shop in Hamburg, Germany. After its interior systems are installed and checked, it will fly back to the final assembly and delivery plant in Toulouse, France, for more testing. ANA will take possession in March.
The special paint job, based on Hawaiian sea turtles, reflects ANA's plan for the super-jumbo planes, which will fly the heavily-sold Tokyo-Honolulu route. Using 16 shades of color, the paint job took 21 days and is one of the most complex Airbus has done. The first plane is in blue, the second will feature green, and the third will repeat the turtle design in orange.