American Airlines shows off first Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Capt. Bruce Johnson explains cockpit instruments of the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner that American Airlines will put into commercial service May 7.

American Airlines is making final preparations to begin flying its newest plane — the Boeing 787 — this week.

The Texas-based carrier showed off the plane to employees and the news media last week at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

The first passenger flight with the plane, which Boeing calls the Dreamliner, is scheduled for May 7 from Dallas to Chicago.

It will fly to Beijing starting June 2, to Buenos Aires on June 4. American plans other destinations later.

The 787 is made largely from carbon materials to reduce weight and boost fuel economy.

American has ordered 42 of the long-range jets, although last month it delayed five that were to be delivered next year, citing a glut of flights on some international routes.

List price for the Dreamliner: $218 million, but airlines routinely get big discounts.

Boeing assembles the 787 in North Charleston and Everett, Wash.

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American was supposed to take delivery of its 787 in 2012, but delays pushed that back until January.

The carrier now has four Dreamliners.

After this week’s launch, it will be the second U.S. carrier to offer commercial flights on the Dreamliner.

United Airlines was the first in November 2012. It has 14 787s in its fleet.