Qatar Airways receives its first Airbus A380 superjumbo

Qatar Airways has become the latest airline to add the world's largest passenger jet, the Airbus A380 superjumbo, to its fleet. 

The airline held a press conference at the Airbus Factory in Hamburg, Germany, on Tuesday to mark the handover of the aircraft.

Qatar has 10 Airbus A380-800s on order and is set to take delivery of four before the end of this year.

Qatar Group Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker said the airline's A380 would not be like those used by other airlines.

"The A380 that we are introducing is not just any A380; we have completely designed every element, giving it a signature touch that has never been seen before on board," he said.

The Qatar A380 features a total of 517 seats spread across three classes: eight in first class; 48 in business class and 461 in economy class. The economy class seats are spread 10 across in a 3-4-3 configuration.

The airline's first A380 flights we be on the Doha-London route from October, followed by Doha-Paris.

Qatar Airways is also set to be the launch customer of the new Airbus A350 XWB, expected to be delivered before the end of the year.

Despite these latest orders from Qatar, Airbus has struggled to sell the superjumbo, with no sales to airlines in the US, South America, Africa or India and only one carrier in China signing up. 

The A380 has a list price of $US400 million ($A431 million), but the pressure has forced Airbus to cut prices as much as 50 per cent, according to industry analysts. So far, Airbus has received 318 orders and delivered 139 planes to just 12 airlines - a lower than expected figure for an aircraft the company expected many airlines to use as their flagships.

Qantas was one of the early customers for the superjumbo and has ordered 20 in total, with 12 already in operation. The biggest customer for the A380 has been Emirates, ordering 140 and building a special hub at its Dubai airport for the giant planes.

Take a look at the gallery above to explore the Qatar Airways A380.

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