FedEx took delivery of its first Airbus, an A300-600R, 20 years ago today. The aircraft was the first of 25 FedEx ordered from Airbus in 1991. FedEx eventually ordered an additional 17, taking delivery of the last A300 off the production line in 2007.
FedEx's order was significant for Airbus as Boeing and McDonnell Douglas dominated the freighter market at the time. Until then, only four aircraft had rolled out of Airbus' factory with a main deck cargo door: three A300s and one A310.
Today, FedEx operates a fleet of 94 A300-600s and A310-200/300s, many of them converted passenger models. While FedEx's A310 fleet continues to dwindle in favor of more efficient types, the A300 is expected to see service well into the next decade.
Photo credit: Brian Bostick
FedEx employees welcome their new A300 during a cememony in Memphis in June 1994. This aircraft was only one of two Airbuses ever to wear FedEx's original purple livery.