Boeing 747-8 Freighter wraps certification flights

Wed Aug 3, 2011 5:24pm EDT

* Boeing says 747-8 Freighter finishes flight test

* Plane set for delivery in September

CHICAGO Aug 3 (Reuters) - Boeing Co (BA.N) on Wednesday said its new elongated 747-8 Freighter has completed its certification flight test program, a key milestone that paves the way for first delivery.

"We are in the home stretch in delivering this airplane to our customers," said Elizabeth Lund, Boeing's vice president and general manager of the 747 program, in a statement.

The 747-8 Freighter has flown more than 1,200 flights and 3,400 hours since its maiden flight in February 2010.

The first 747-8 Freighter is scheduled to be delivered to Cargolux [CLUX.UL] in September after certification from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.

Boeing has taken 76 orders for the Freighter, which lists for $319 million. Boeing also is testing a passenger version of the plane called the Intercontinental.

Production of the new 747 has been delayed as has the mid-sized 787 Dreamliner, a carbon-composite plane, which represents a bigger leap in technology than the revamped 747-8.

The iconic 747 is Boeing's most recognizable airplane and was the world's largest plane until 2005, when Airbus EAD.PA unveiled its A380. (Reporting by Kyle Peterson, editing by Matthew Lewis)