You won’t believe how many Concorde were supposed to be built

There could've been many more of the iconic plane in the skies.
  • Concorde is one of the most iconic planes to ever take to the skies
  • Traveling two times the speed of sound, passengers could arrive in New York at an earlier time than they had left London
  • Despite being such an iconic aircraft, only 20 were ever built – although many more were planned

Published on Jan 15, 2024 at 4:31PM (UTC+4)

Last updated on Jan 15, 2024 at 6:59PM (UTC+4)

Edited by Amelia Jean Hershman-Jones
You won't believe how many Concorde were supposed to be built

With a plane as iconic as Concorde, you’d expect quite a few to have been built.

But the fact is, only 20 were built: two prototypes, two pre-production aircraft, two development aircraft, and 14 production aircraft for commercial service.

There were plans for many more than that, though.

READ MORE! Everyone’s in awe after seeing pictures of Concorde’s cockpit for the first time

Back in the 1960s, 18 different airlines had put down orders for the yet-to-be-built Concorde, summing up 75 in total.

But, after a horrific crash that involved a Tupolev-144 at the Paris Air Show in 1973, all but two airlines canceled their orders.

Air France and British Airways stuck with the project as their two governments were the ones financing and building them.

And that’s why only 20 Concorde aircraft were built, with only 14 entering service, embarking on a total of 50,000 flights between them.

It’s a shame really, as Concorde revolutionized the possibilities of air travel, flying twice as fast as other commercial planes.

Although Concorde is one of the most iconic planes to ever take to the skies, the plane flopped due to a number of issues.

These ranged from poor business decisions to the devastating crash.

And then there was the mammoth cost of a Concorde plane ticket.

To be expected really, when the aircraft could fly from London to New York in just three and a half hours.

To achieve this the plane had to travel two times the speed of sound, reaching Mach 2.04 (2,518 km/h / 1,565 mph).

The plane was particularly popular with bankers, who could land in New York at an earlier time than they had left London.

All the more time to do cross-continental business.

But buying a ticket was no small feat.

The plane’s capacity was really limited, only able to take 109 passengers at a time.

To put it in perspective, a Boeing 747 can take 800 passengers.

This meant tickets were really expensive, with a round trip across the Atlantic costing $12,000 in today’s money.

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