First 737-7 Max revealed

The first Boeing 737 MAX 7 broke cover yesterday at the company’s Renton, Washington factory.

The MAX 7 is the third member of Boeing’s 737 MAX family. The jet is designed for up to 172 passengers and a maximum range of 3,850 nautical miles, which is the longest range of the MAX airplane family.

Technology improvements allow the MAX 7 to fly 1,000 nautical miles farther and carry more passengers than its predecessor, the 737-700, while having 18 percent lower fuel costs per seat.

The MAX 7 is also superior to the competition, carrying 12 more passengers 400 nautical miles farther than the A319neo, on 7 percent lower operating costs per seat. While that’s all very well the A319neo has just 50 or so orders and is largely ignored in marketing terms by Airbus.

The first MAX 7 will now undergo system checks, fueling and engine runs on the flight line in Renton. The airplane, the first of two MAX 7 flight test airplanes, will begin its flight testing program in the coming weeks.

The 737 MAX 7 is scheduled to enter service in 2019, following delivery to launch customer Southwest Airlines.

The 737 Max 7 is short enough not to require a tail stand while at a gate to stop it tipping backwards when loaded.