The Airbus A340 is a large capacity long-range four-engine aircraft manufactured by Airbus. It is available in several versions depending on the capacity or range desired. This family of aircraft was designed with a design like that of the Airbus A330, however they are equipped with four engines instead of two. The manufacture of the A340s ceased in 2011.
In chronological order, the A340-300 is the first of the A330 / A340 series. Airbus gave it priority to optimize the A330’s ETOPS certification. The prototype made its first flight on October 25, 1991. The first aircraft was delivered to Air France on February 26, 1993
In a typical configuration, this aircraft can carry up to 295 passengers (12 first class, 42 business class, and 241 economy class) over 12,300 km, thanks to the supercritical wing already manufactured by British Aerospace for the A310.
Cabin accommodations increase the capacity to 440 passengers in dense or charter configurations. The A340-300 has the same fuselage length as the Airbus A330-300, enabling it to transport 32 LD3 containers on its lower level. Equipped with 4 engines, this aircraft can carry out long-haul flights over uninhabited areas, including over the ocean.
The Airbus A340-300 features four CFM56-5C4/P engines that deliver a cruising speed of 885 km/h and a maximum range of 13,700 km. Equipped with these engines, the A340-300 has exceptional environmental features, including low fuel consumption as well as low emissions. The engines also contribute to the significant reduction in maintenance costs.
Moreover, thanks to these modern turbojets, the A340-300 and -200 have a very quiet cabin, that is especially appreciated by the passengers. In addition, when the prototype was unveiled, the shape of the aircraft was a great aesthetic success, especially with one of its first customers, Virgin Atlantic.