Turkish Airlines (THY) is reported to have initiated talks with the U.S. aerospace company Boeing for the purchase of eight 747-8i, also known as the Super Jumbo Jet.
According to a report by Turkish daily Hürriyet, THY plans to bring Boeing's super jumbo jets to its fleet through financial leasing and employ them for long-haul flights.
If the $3 billion purchase is finalized, the national flagship carrier will reduce the number of flights to one to destinations where the airliner flies more than once per day. For routes with three flights a day, the company will fly twice with the 747-8i and another flight will be with the Boeing 777-300ER. Moreover, the purchase will also lead to the rebirth of the four-engine 747 Jumbo, whose manufacture has been decreased.
A special cabin design for THY will be introduced in the aircraft whose seat capacity can rise to 410 in three classes.
The price that the world's largest aerospace company Boeing offered to THY is reported to be so affordable that no other company has offered the airliner so far. The standard-equipped price of the aircraft is $386.8 million.
U.S.-based manufacturer Boeing started working on the new model of 747 Jumbo Jet in 2008, which the company had since 1969. The new model has a longer body, and the wing and motor technology was derived from Boeing's composite body 787.
After the cargo aircraft 747-8F made its first flight in February 2010, the passenger model 747-8i flew for the first time in March 2011. The letter "i" in the name of the model represents "intercontinental" flight.
U.S. presidential planes, known as Air Force One, are also 747-8i. Boeing has taken 133 aircraft offers in total, 45 passenger aircrafts and 88 for cargo flights.