The first Airbus A350 XWB aircraft for Vietnam Airlines rolled out of the body paint shop in Toulouse, France on March 6, featuring a polished blue exterior and the signature golden lotus flower on the tail.

The airplane has entered the final stages of construction as its engines are to be fitted and the interior will be installed shortly before conducting ground and test flights. It is expected to join the fleet in mid-2015.

Vietnam’s national-flagship carrier is the second carrier worldwide and the first in the Asia Pacific owning both new-generation Boeing 787 and Airbus A350.

The airline will operate 14 Airbus A350 XWB planes, including ten purchased from Airbus and four leased.

It plans to deploy its A350 XWB fleet for long-distance flights, beginning with services from Hanoi to Paris.

The A350 XWB is Airbus’s latest generation wide body jetliner, offering a unique passenger experience.

By the end of January 2015, some 780 A350 XWBs had been ordered by 40 clients across the globe.-VNA