The Boeing Company (BA) towed the first 747-8 Freighter model out of its factory in Everett. The long-awaited freighter is now being put up for test flights.

The 747-8 Freighter is the new high-capacity 747 that will give cargo operators the lowest operating costs and best economics of any freighter airplane while providing enhanced environmental performance. It is 250 feet, 2 inches (76.3 m) long, which is 18 feet and 4 inches (5.6 m) longer than the 747-400 series Freighter. The stretch provides customers with 16% more revenue cargo volume compared to its predecessor. That translates to four additional main-deck pallets and three additional lower-hold pallets.

Boeing to date has secured 105 orders for the 747-8 series aircrafts, 78 of which are orders for the freighter variant. The rest orders are for the passenger variant. The 747-8 Freighter series will boost the commercial aircraft segment of Boeing. In the recently reported third quarter of fiscal 2009, the company booked 96 gross orders. The company finished the quarter with segmental backlog of $254 billion.

Headquartered in Chicago, Boeing is the world’s largest manufacturer of commercial jet liners and military aerospace products (based on total sales). Boeing designs and produces commercial airplanes, defense systems, and civil and defense space systems. It is also the largest NASA contractor. Non-airplane products include helicopters, electronic and defense systems, missiles, satellites, rocket engines, launch vehicles and advanced information and communication systems. We maintain our market Neutral recommendation on the shares.
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