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Wed 29 Feb 2012 11:17 AM

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Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft

Super-sized airliner to be delivered to unnamed VIP customer

Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
Boeing handed over the first passenger version of its upgraded and extended 747 to a secret VIP customer, who sent the gleaming, all-white plane along to a modification center to transform it into the "jewel of the sky." (Getty Images)
Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
The delivery of the 747-8 Intercontinental - Boeing's largest and most recognisable commercial airplane - caps a development delay of more than a year. (Getty Images)
Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
Boeing, the world's second-largest plane-maker marked the milestone with an understated ceremony, keeping the media at arm's length to safeguard the identity of its customer, thought by industry insiders to be the state of Qatar. (Getty Images)
Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
"The 747 is the most iconic airplane in the world, and I know customers are going to love what we've done to enhance its performance," Jim Albaugh, president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said in a statement. (Getty Images)
Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
"The Intercontinental is fast, efficient and quiet, offering real savings and a great flying experience," he said. (Getty Images)
Boeing delivers largest ever aircraft
Boeing, which competes for orders with rival Airbus, has taken 36 orders - nine from non-airline customers - for the aircraft, which lists at $332.9 million. The airplane is more than 12 months behind its initial delivery schedule and some experts say the order book is puny. (Getty Images)