Airbus test flies its first U.S.-built jetliner over Gulf


European aircraft maker Airbus is conducting a test flight for its first airplane made in the United States.

A twin-engine A321 passenger jet took off Monday from the company’s new assembly plant at Brookley Field in Mobile, Alabama.

Airbus says the three-hour flight over the Gulf of Mexico will include a series of maneuvers and tests of all the airplane’s operating systems.

The aircraft will be delivered to purchaser JetBlue in a few weeks after final preparations.

Airbus began constructing the $600 million plant in 2013 after selecting Alabama’s port city as the location. State and local governments provided more than $158 million in incentives for the factory, which will employ about 1,000 people.

The plant will produce A319 and A320 aircraft aside from the A321.