Dubai Airshow 2021: What lies ahead?

It is less than 24 hours before the Dubai Airshow 2021 is a go, and the excitement on the ground is palpable. As the aviation world normalises, Dubai Airshow is the first big airshow to be conducted in the past two years. Incidentally, they were also the last big airshow to happen pre-pandemic. By the time Singapore Airshow was conducted, Covid-19 had already spread its tentacles and hence had seen reduced participation as compared to what it could have been.

LiveFromALounge is on the ground at the Dubai Airshow 2021 to check out and tell you all about the latest in the world of aerospace and commercial aviation as it happens in Dubai. Let us check out what do we expect to see and hear at DAS 2021.

Boeing’s 777X in the flesh

Back in 2019, Boeing had been keeping its head under at the airshows. They were dealing with the crisis around the 737 MAX then, and did not have much to talk about. In Paris, there were big MoUs announced w.r.t. purchase of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft from British Airways, but never converted. In 2021, Boeing will be a different force to deal with. They have mostly secured approvals for the Boeing 737 MAX to be ungrounded across the globe, apart from China, and in spite of Covid-19, have cleared up a lot of the inventory that was piling up at the Boeing facilities across the state of Washington, US.

Boeing is bringing out the 777X aircraft, its largest commercial aircraft under development currently. This will be the first big outing for the 777X, known for its folding wingtips for one, and Boeing will showcase this to the media and its customers at Dubai Airshow 2021 for the first time. Emirates, the home airline of Dubai, has 126 of the 777X on order. For those in Dubai attending the airshow, also expect to see the 777X take to the skies to participate in the flypast scheduled at the airshow every day.

Amongst the other products from the Boeing stable that will be showcased at the Dubai Airshow, the  737-9 EcoDemonstrator, which is a collaboration with Alaska Airlines, has flown in to the airshow as well. So has the Etihad Airways 787-10 Greenliner, which made a short trip from Abu Dhabi to participate in the Airshow and will lead the Al-fursan demonstration team of UAE at the flypast.

But that is not all, also expect to see the FlyDubai 737 MAX at the airshow, which will display the newest Business Class product that FlyDubai has included on the jet, in a change of strategy from the earlier flatbeds on their 737 MAX aircraft.

From the Boeing stable, also expect the Boeing Business Jet, although far from the public eye!

Airbus brings in its entire product suite

Airbus is having a strong lead over Boeing in terms of overall order book backlog on the commercial aircraft business, and is going to go big at the Dubai Airshow by all indications. The Airbus lineup includes everything from the A220 and the A321LR all the way up to the A350 and the A380.

The Airbus 220 will come from partner Air Baltic which has always been happy to participate at the airshow in partnership with Airbus. Besides customer jets such as the A380 from Emirates with the premium economy product inside, and the A321LRs from customers Air Arabia and WizzAir, also expect the debut of the Etihad A350-1000 at the Dubai Airshow. Airbus is also bringing along its testbed aircraft, the A350-900 Airspace Explorer which is used to test new product technologies such as the 100% dimmable windows coming on the A350, which will participate in the flypast every day.

Airbus will also have its private jet (the Airbus Corporate Jet ACJ) show up at the airshow.

Embraer’s E2 Profit Hunter Aircraft will show up too!

Embraer will bring along its E2 demonstration aircraft all the way from Brazil. The eye-grabbing livery has been popular at previous airshows as well. Expect other general aviation aircraft of the Embraer lineup to also show up.

Lufthansa Technik’s EXPLORER

Lufthansa’s MRO subsidiary, which is a big player in the aircraft design and refurbish market, has just released details about the EXPLORER concept, where Lufthansa is pitching to customers the private jet equivalent of a yacht. Amongst the useful/crazy nature of the design, one of the things that stands out is an extendable sundeck that pops out of the top cargo-door. One wonders if those who have access to a wide-body private jet would like to live the RV lifestyle on their jets, or keep them to jet set the globe.

Russia’s MC21 will be there too

Another interesting participant this time around will be the MC21, which is a competitor to the other narrow body jets from Airbus and Boeing. I think this is the first time we see it participating at the Dubai Airshow and also take part in the flying display.

Apart from these, India has gone all in on displaying its firepower at the airshow, so lookout for the Sarang helicopter team and the Suryakiran acrobatic display team at the Dubai Airshow, apart from the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft showing up as well!

Keep an eye everyday for our Dubai Airshow coverage right here on LiveFromALounge.com

What are you most excited about at the Dubai Airshow 2021?


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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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