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Mon, Dec 11, 2006

Comlux Takes Delivery of First Airbus A318 Elite

Smallest Member Of Airliner-Based ACJ Family

Aero-News has learned Comlux has taken delivery of the first Airbus A318 Elite, making the Zurich-based VVIP charter company the first to operate the type. The aircraft will now be outfitted with a VIP cabin seating up to 18 passengers, by Lufthansa Technik at Hamburg, which is due to deliver the completed aircraft in spring next year.

The A318 Elite is the newest and smallest member of the Airbus Corporate Jetliner (ACJ) Family, which also includes the Airbus ACJ and A320 Prestige. Comlux's aircraft is powered by CFM International CFM56-5 engines.

Airbus states the A318 Elite offers unprecedented comfort and spaciousness, as like the rest of the A3XX family it has the widest cabin of any corporate jet.

"We constantly strive to offer our passengers the best in comfort and service, which the Airbus A318 Elite will allow us to deliver in a new and unique market-segment," says Comlux President and CEO Ettore Rodaro. "We were delighted with the Airbus ACJ that we took delivery of earlier this year, and are very excited about adding the A318 Elite to our fleet," he adds.

Launched in autumn 2005, the Airbus A318 Elite made its first flight in October this year. Derived from the A318 airliner, the A318 Elite incorporates additional corporate jet features, such as a VIP cabin, an additional center tank that allows transatlantic range, a higher cruise altitude of 41,000 ft, and built-in airstairs.

The A318 Elite is also being certificated for steep approaches, which have the potential to allow operations at airports with tough noise rules and nearby obstacles.

"There are many corporate jets on the market, but if you want the best in space and comfort, it's the Airbus ACJ family that stands out from the crowd," comments Airbus Chief Operating Officer Customers John Leahy. "Comlux builds its business on delivering excellence to VVIP customers, and we are delighted that it has chosen our Airbus ACJ Family in which to provide it," he adds.

Airbus' ACJ Family has won around 80 firm orders to date. It was the first to introduce fly-by-wire controls to the corporate jet market, and sports extensive use of weight-saving carbon fiber composites.

FMI: www.airbus.com, www.comluxaviation.com

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