For displays in international airshow, Airbus uses A380 whose livery is the one of customers. Here are some examples:

Are those aircraft regular newly built aircraft ready to be delivered to airlines (with all the seats and passenger equipment inside)? Are those aircraft specially prepared?

  • $\begingroup$ @RedGrittyBrick I think F-WWAK is a temporary registration as it has been assigned to several A380 before being changed. $\endgroup$ – Manu H Oct 20 '14 at 16:22
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    $\begingroup$ @PeterKämpf When asking the question, I was thinking of one aircraft used by Airbus (prototype, test,...) performing all the display flights and whose livery would be changed; or planes not yet ready to be delivered that need to perform flight test or whose interior is not yet complete $\endgroup$ – Manu H Oct 20 '14 at 17:08
  • $\begingroup$ Airbus uses dummy engines when they paint the engine cowling just to avoid the capital cost of owning the engines for the few days the painting needs. All aircraft are delivered, and test or display articles are kept for the shortest time possible. A dedicated display aircraft is simply too expensive. $\endgroup$ – Peter Kämpf Oct 20 '14 at 17:23
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    $\begingroup$ @PeterKämpf Yes a dedicated aircraft would be expensive as there is not airshow all year long, but there are prototypes still active (MSN001, MSN004) that could be used for such display. $\endgroup$ – Manu H Oct 20 '14 at 17:40
  • $\begingroup$ The average price of an A-380 is 414.4 Mio USD. Just the financing cost at a yearly rate of 2% costs 22,700 USD per day. Such display aircraft need to be kept away from their customer for as little time as possible to keep airshow expenses down. $\endgroup$ – Peter Kämpf Oct 20 '14 at 18:46

In all cases the answer is yes, those aircraft were all outfitted with seats, and at least very close to being ready for delivery to the customer. Installing interiors and seats is a regular part of the production process, and it's unlikely that the plane would be pulled from the line before seats are installed, and worked back in later. From looking at rollout and delivery dates, these aircraft all had about 7 months between rollout and delivery, with the air show appearance happening within a month of delivery. Also, the aircraft are used as static displays while not flying, allowing people to walk through and see the interior.

In 2011, the Korean Air A380 indeed had seats in it. It was delivered in the middle of July.

In 2012, the Malaysian A380 also had seats installed. It was delivered at the end of July.

In 2013, the British Airways A380 probably had seats installed. I can't find any pictures of the inside, but it was delivered shortly after in early July.

Airbus also tends to bring a flight test A380 like MSN001 (first to fly, registered F-WWOW) for display, and has a more unusual interior. The Korean Air A380 was used for the display in 2011 after the flight test plane MSN004 had a bit of a mishap.


Are those aircraft regular newly built aircraft ready to be delivered to airlines

Yes. At least in the case of the aircraft in BA livery at the Paris airshow.

From other photos taken at that event, it had registration F-WWSK and construction number 095

BA registered it as G-XLEA.

That was listed as delivered 4 July so almost certainly fully completed ready for BA when at the airshow on 17th June.


In the early days of A380 only prototypes were available, flying from airshow to airshow, each time with a livery of national company of the place.

They used giant adhesive films from Adhetec (13880 film series(pdf)).


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