This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
In what would have clearly seemed like an April Fools’ joke had the news been delivered on April 1, one Airbus Paris Air Show announcement at first seemed very real — there was even a modified A380 to match, complete with new winglets and a fresh paint job. But the A380plus is really just a regular A380, plus some paint and two mocked-up winglets. We were almost fooled.
Seeing the charade to completion, I made my way onboard the “A380plus,” which, as I’m now keenly aware, is simply a test aircraft shell. In fact, this particular A380 doesn’t even leave the ground — it was at Le Bourget long before the show and will remain after all the guests (and “real” aircraft) fly away.
But I still wanted to see inside.
While the “plus” model doesn’t actually give us idea of what the finished product would look like — including 80 additional seats in a 3-5-3 configuration, reduced aisle width and compact staircases — it’s certainly interesting to see a superjumbo in this state. You can get a feel for the empty aircraft in the video walkthrough below.
There are a few components inside the plane, such as a cockpit.
Some Airbus testing equipment.
More test equipment…
Loads and loads of wires.
And even more wires overhead.
Otherwise, it’s almost entirely bare. For example, this is where you’d find the bedroom for Etihad’s Residence (see TPG’s full review here).
And here’s where you’d find a couple hundred economy seats, or several dozen first and business-class seats, depending on the airline.
The staircases were just about the only components that were fully intact, though the rear spiral staircase (to be replaced on the plus) was very rickety.
So what’s next for this particular A380? Well, it may never fly again — it arrived at Le Bourget early this year and is now a fixture of the airport’s Air and Space Museum.
See these posts for more from the Paris Air Show:
- Video Tour: Qatar Airways’ Brand-New Qsuite Business Class
- First Look: Qatar Airways Qsuite Business Class
- Qatar Airways’ First 777 With Qsuite Business Class Arrives in Paris
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards