Friday, 10th August 2007 by

Here in Toulouse, France, Google Earth finally gets its first glimpse of the largest passenger airliner in the world, the Airbus A380 "Superjumbo".

The A380 is a double-decker, four-engined aircraft which provides seating for 525 people in standard three-class configuration or up to 853 people in full economy class mode. It takes 3,600 litres (950 gallons) of paint to cover the exterior, and each one has 530 km (330 miles) of wiring!

Actually there's two of these monster planes here at Toulouse airport, the other being parked just to the north, as this is where they're assembled. It was also here that the A380 first flew, initially with a take-off weight of 421 tonnes; and although this was only 75 percent of its maximum take-off weight, it was the heaviest take-off weight of any passenger airliner ever flown.

There's also a freighter model due for entry into service in 2014, which will have a payload capacity exceeded only by the previously featured Antonov An-225 Mriya. As ever, you can read more about the A380 at Wikipedia.

Thanks to Matthew McMillan, T van Rooijen, didier lauret, John Starfire and Ben Jackson.