Era of tri-jets within Lufthansa Group comes to an end – On October 17, Lufthansa Cargo’s last MD-11F landed in Frankfurt.
On Sunday (October 17, 2021), a Lufthansa Cargo MD-11 landed at Frankfurt Airport for the last time. Flight LH8161 from New York (JFK) touched down ahead of schedule at 12:03 p.m. local time on runway 07R. This marked the end of commercial service of the three-engine MD-11F aircraft type at Lufthansa Cargo after more than 23 years. The aircraft with registration D-ALCC, also the last MD-11F registered in Europe, will now be sold to an American cargo airline.
“We are very grateful to our MD-11F fleet for over two decades of loyal service. We know that this particular aircraft has an incredible number of fans, throughout our colleagues at Lufthansa as well as among aviation enthusiasts worldwide. The decisive factor for the introduction of the MD-11F at Lufthansa Cargo in the late nineties was its significantly better fuel efficiency compared to the widebody freighter previously used. In the future, we will rely on the twin-engine Boeing 777F for the same reason,” said Dorothea von Boxberg, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Lufthansa Cargo.
Lufthansa Cargo took delivery of its first two MD-11 freighters (former registrations D-ALCA and D-ALCB) in June 1998, followed by the third aircraft in August of the same year and given the registration D-ALCC. In total, Lufthansa Cargo operated nineteen MD-11, including the last ever manufactured (former registration D-ALCN, serial number 48806, delivered 25 January 2001) and the last ever delivered (former registration D-ALCM, serial number 48805, delivered 22 February 2001) aircraft of this type.
The MD-11 freighter is 61.4 meters long with a wingspan of 51.7 meters and a height of up to 18 meters. It has a cargo capacity of up to 94.7 tons, divided into 26 positions on the main deck and up to 14 more on the lower deck. Lufthansa Cargo’s freighters were powered by three General Electric CF6-80C2D1F jet engines, each with 273.57 kN standard thrust. The maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) was 285.99 metric tons, resulting in a range of 7,242 kilometers.
Since November 2013, Lufthansa Cargo has been gradually replacing the MD-11F freighters with twin-engine Boeing 777 freighters, which are much quieter and operate with lower emissions.