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Japan Airlines' new fuel-sipping Airbus A350 set for Sept. debut

Japan Airlines Co.'s new Airbus A350-900 passenger plane is seen in a hangar at Tokyo's Haneda Airport on June 20, 2019. (Mainichi/Masamitsu Kurokawa)

TOKYO -- Japan Airlines Co. (JAL) unveiled the latest edition to its fleet at Haneda Airport here on June 20: the brand-new Airbus A350-900.

The aircraft will enter service on Sept. 1, flying between the capital and Fukuoka in southwestern Japan.

"We really listened to the opinions of our younger staff to prioritize seat comfort," commented JAL President Yuji Akasaka of the new aircraft's consumer appeal. "I'd like many customers to get aboard this plane."

JAL's primary aircraft is the Boeing 777, with 40 currently in service. However, the A350's stellar fuel economy -- clocking in at 25% better than the 777 -- and other factors lured the carrier to Boeing's European archrival.

The A350 revealed on June 20 is a domestic route version, with 369 seats all with seatback entertainment systems, as well as electrical outlets and USB ports for powering passengers' phones and laptops.

JAL has ordered 18 A350-900 aircraft, plus 13 larger A350-1000 planes, the latter slated for international routes.

(Japanese original by Masamitsu Kurokawa, Tama General Bureau)

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