Lufthansa returns A380

(CNN) – The A380 Superjumbo is popular with aviation enthusiasts for its spacious cabin, sheer size and quiet flight, but its days are numbered since Airbus announced in 2019 that it was ending production of the airliner.

Expensive to operate, the demise of the world’s largest passenger aircraft appears to have accelerated due to a travel slump due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but now German airline Lufthansa, which has been selling its grounded A380s and was supposed to be withdrawing planes from its parka. plans to redeploy the huge aircraft from the summer of 2023.

In a statement Lufthansa said the aircraft is returning “in response to a surge in consumer demand and a delay in the delivery of ordered aircraft”, noting that the A380 remains popular with crew and passengers.

The Return of the Superjumbo

Lufthansa A380 aircraft are currently in "deep storage." Here is a photo of Lufthansa A380s parked in a warehouse at Teruel Airport taken in May 2020.

Lufthansa A380 aircraft are currently in “deep storage”. Here is a photo of Lufthansa A380s parked in a warehouse at Teruel Airport taken in May 2020.

David Ramos/Getty Images

Lufthansa has sold six of its A380s in the last couple of years, leaving the airline with eight super jumbos left in its fleet. These aircraft are currently in “deep storage” in Spain and France.

The German flag carrier says it is still evaluating how many A380s will be reactivated and figuring out which routes they can fly.

As a rule, airlines use superjumbo on popular long-haul routes. The size of the aircraft makes it costly to operate, so there must be demand to justify it.

While the A380 seemed to be fading away in recent years, Lufthansa’s decision suggests the A380 hasn’t made it into the history books yet. Superjumbos also remain in the fleets of Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Korean Air, All Nippon Airways and British Airways.

Earlier this year Airbus A380 also performed a test flight runs on sustainable aviation fuel, or SAF, a type of fuel primarily made from used vegetable oil and waste fats, and runs on a single Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engine.

Top photo: A parked Lufthansa A380 photographed by Thomas Lones/Getty Images in March 2020.