KLM adds four Airbus A350F aircraft to its order book to replace 747s

KLM Cargo ordered four Airbus A350F aircraft
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KLM has ordered four Airbus A350F aircraft, which will be operated by its cargo subsidiary, Martinair. 

The cargo jets are scheduled for delivery in Autumn 2026, with no further details as yet on an exact date. Air France-KLM group’s order book for the A350F now totals eight aircraft, as the group’s freight airlines will be among the first to receive the new freighter. 

The Dutch airline’s incoming A350Fs will replace four Boeing 747s that are either operated or owned by Martinair. Currently, the quartet of Queen of the Skies is on average 22.9 years old. 

“Fleet renewal is an important part of KLM’s ambition to become more sustainable. In this, we take our responsibility,” said Marjan Rintel, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of KLM. Adriaan den Heijer, the Executive Vice President of Air France-KLM Cargo and managing director of Martinair, added that he is pleased with the order of the A350Fs, as these “new, technologically advanced aircraft joining the fleet” will fit well with the operations of Martinair and the group’s Engineering & Maintenance division. 

“For our customers, the versatility of the A350F is good news for the future. The new aircraft are an important addition, supplementing the belly capacity of our extensive intercontinental passenger fleet,” den Heijer added. 

The configured maximum payload of the incoming four aircraft will be 108 tonnes. While KLM had originally planned to phase out the Boeing 747Fs in 2027, it will now do so during H2 2026. 

Continuing in praise of the jet, Benjamin Smith, CEO of Air France-KLM, said: “I am delighted to announce that KLM and Air France’s cargo divisions will soon operate the quietest and most advanced full freighter aircraft available on the market, the Airbus A350F. This investment is evidence of our confidence in the sustainable growth of the cargo market in the coming years, as well as our commitment to reducing our environmental footprint.”  

Airbus first announced the A350F in July 2021. At that time, the European manufacturer planned to introduce the type in 2025. 

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