On 8 December, the star of the day was the Boeing 737 MAX. Several thousand Boeing employees were present at the unveiling of the company’s new single-aisle at the Renton plant in America’s northwest. This first plane, named "Spirit of Renton", sports a special livery on its fuselage, featuring the 60 airlines who have ordered it.
Launched more than four years ago, the aircraft is now equipped with giant split winglets and its LEAP engines. Being the pride of the airframer’s employees, naturally the moment was instantaneously immortalized with photographs and selfies to be shared on social networks.
This first 737 MAX, designated for flight-testing, will begin trials in early 2016. At the Boeing plant, three other test aircraft are being assembled. All lights are green for a first delivery to the launch customer, Southwest Airlines, in the summer of 2017.
Available in four versions (MAX 7, MAX 8, MAX 200 and MAX 9), the 737 MAX family totals nearly 3,000 orders. The single-aisle market over the next twenty years is promising, with Boeing estimating it at 27,000 units.