This is the first high-gross-weight conversion and delivers an upward revision to the maximum gross payload for the A330-300P2F.
EFW previously listed the maximum gross payload for the A330-300 at 59 tonnes but now says that some newer vintage aircraft will offer gross payloads of 62 tonnes, if converted. EFW told Cargo Facts that after weighing unit 777, a newer vintage than previous A330-300 conversions, the gross payload was calculated at 63 tonnes.
Unit 777, which is also the first Rolls-Royce-powered A330-300 conversion, is just under fourteen years old. The three frames EFW previously converted for DHL (116, ex-Malaysia Airlines; 127, ex-Hi Fly; and 231, ex-Thai Airways) were all Pratt & Whitney-powered, with the youngest being just under twenty-two years old.
Unit 777 was inducted at EFW’s facility in Dresden (DRS) in June 2019, and will be ferried to Malta this week for paint ahead of service entry on behalf of the express carrier. There are currently two other A330-300s undergoing conversion by EFW in DRS: an ex-Shanghai Airlines aircraft (781) that arrived in July 2019, and a ten-year-old frame (1124, ex-Hong Kong Airlines) that was inducted in March.
DHL received unit 116 in 2017, unit 127 in 2018, and unit 231 in September 2019. The express integrator launched the A330-300P2F program in 2016 with an order for four conversions. The company then ordered four more at the 2017 Paris Air Show, along with options for ten additional conversions.
EFW reports seeing an uptick in interest for the A330-300 as an increasing number of aircraft are slated to come off lease or become available as global passenger demand remains subdued. While A330-200 and -300 feedstock is becoming more widely available, so too is feedstock for the program’s main competitor, the 767-300.