Lufthansa’s introduction of the Boeing 747-8 has met all expectations, says Dean Raineri, director of new aircraft readiness at Lufthansa Technik.

Raineri, speaking to delegates at Aviation Week’s MRO Europe conference in Amsterdam, said the airline achieved 100% dispatch reliability in June and July, the first two months of 747-8 operations.

In August, performance fell to 98.2%, but Raineri notes that with a fleet of only three aircraft so far, that is still a significant achievement.

The airline operates 10 Airbus A380s, all at nearly 99% dispatch reliability.

Raineri says that “you cannot start too early” in terms of preparing for new aircraft entering the fleet, but that the bulk of the work and the steepest learning curve are in the last 15-20 months before entry into service.

While the 747-8 is a derivative aircraft, Raineri points out that a lot of its systems have been updated, so the introduction was similar to getting a new aircraft. He predicts that airlines will have a similar experience when Boeing introduces its 737 MAX.