• Joe Breitfeller

Atlas Air Worldwide Purchases Final Four Boeing 747-8 Freighters, as Production Closes in 2022

Atlas Air Worldwide has purchased four Boeing 747-8 Freighters which will complete the production process for the aircraft type in 2022. The order will allow Atlas to add capacity and meet growing global cargo demand.


Atlas Air Worldwide Boeing 747-8F - Courtesy Boeing

On Tuesday (January 12, 2021), Boeing announced that Atlas Air Worldwide has ordered four Boeing 747-8 Freighters. The aircraft will be the final four of the type produced when the Everett, Washington 747 line is closed in 2022. The new aircraft will add critical capacity for Atlas, enabling the company to meet growing global demand. The Boeing 747-8F has a maximum payload capacity of 137.7 metric tonnes (137,750 kg), offering customers 20 percent more payload capacity, while reducing fuel burn by 16 percent compared to previous generation 747s. The aircraft’s engines are also 30 percent quieter than previous generation engines. In Tuesday’s announcement, Atlas Air Worldwide’s President and Chief Executive Officer, John W. Dietrich, said,


“The 747-8F is the best and most versatile widebody freighter in the market, and we are excited to bolster our fleet with the acquisition of these four aircraft. This significant growth opportunity will enable us to capitalize on strong demand and deliver value for our existing and prospective customers. The efficiency and capability of the 747-8F further complements our longstanding focus on leading edge technology. Dedicated freighters – like those operated by our Atlas, Polar and Southern subsidiaries – will continue to be in demand as the global airfreight market, particularly the e-commerce and express sectors, continues to grow.”


Also commenting on the company’s final 747-8F order, Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ President and Chief Executive Officer, Stan Deal, added,


“The 747 will forever hold a special place in aviation history and we are honored by Atlas Air’s longstanding commitment to the airplane. Atlas Air began operations 28 years ago with a single 747 and it is fitting that they should receive the last 747 production airplanes, ensuring that the ‘Queen of the Skies’ plays a significant role in the global air cargo market for decades to come. With the global air cargo fleet expected to grow by more than 60% over the next 20 years, we look forward to delivering these airplanes and supporting Atlas Air’s Boeing fleet well into the future.”


Atlas Air is the world’s largest 747 operator in the world with 53 Boeing 747s in their fleet. The company’s fleet also includes 737s, 767s and 777s, with the 777s and 747s capable of carrying tall and outsized cargo on three meter tall pallets.


Boeing provides over 90 percent of the global freighter capacity, including new and converted freighters. Since 747 production began over 50 years ago, Boeing has produced 1,560 aircraft. The company previously announced in July 2020 that they would wind down 747-8 production in 2022.


Purchase, New York-based Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. is a leading global provider of third-party aircraft and aviation operating services. Company subsidiaries include Atlas Air, Southern Air Holdings and Titan Aviation Holdings. Additionally, Atlas owns a majority stake in Polar Air Cargo Worldwide. Together, the Atlas Air family of companies operate the world’s largest Boeing 747 freighter fleet. The company also offers their customers a wide selection of Boeing 747, 777, 767, 757, and 737 aircraft for both cargo and passenger operations.



Source(s): Boeing, Atlas Air Worldwide