Update 23:15z 21June – The trailer has been set to private. We’re sure this will be shared again during FlightSimExpo.
JustFlight have dropped a bombshell and shown off extensive work on their latest project – an Airbus A300B4 for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
The showcase came via the long renowned developer’s YouTube channel, where they describe the project as the company’s “next generation airliner”, and advertise features including complete systems functionality, multiple instrument panel configurations, multiple engine variants, 3D WWise sound set and realistic flight dynamics.
Readers with long memories will remember JustFlight had previously been working on an A300 for P3D, but canned the project around 9 months ago on the grounds that it would be commercially unviable given falling P3D users. Instead, they shifted their focus to MSFS – with today’s video being the first major look at the newly revamped airliner.
The A300B4-200 was Airbus’ first ever aircraft and represents approximately 25% of all A300s ever built. It typically seated around 250 passengers in a two class configuration, had a range of 2500 miles, and shipped with two engine options: the General Electric CF6 or Pratt and Whitney JT9D engines. Crucially to its commercial success, the plane was also the first ever to receive ETOPS certification, allowing it to traverse open oceans with just two jet engines.
The developer says that the aircraft pushes the boundaries of what is possible and comes with the highest quality modelling and photo-realistic textures. Judging from what I saw in the trailer, these modelling and texture details do indeed seem to be of a high fidelity, but nothing we are not already familiar with in MSFS thanks to insanely detailed addons like the Fenix A320CEO.
Following the trailer, we also get to hear from a staff member at JustFlight who tells us more about the plane. Right from the offset we hear the product aim reiterated – to push Microsoft Flight Simulator to its limits and deliver the most immersive airliner experience possible.
JustFlight previously developed the A300 for P3D, and we find out that the origins of this model and the accompanying textures go back to that P3D version, although they have been significantly improved for the MSFS version. iniBuilds also developed an A300 for X-Plane 11 and they recently teased their “ultimate airliner experience” for MSFS with what appeared to be an image of a CF6 engine. This means we may be looking at some competition between the two studios should speculation that iniBuilds are porting their own A300 to MSFS be correct.
Looking at the current state of the cockpit, it’s clear that most if not all of the modelling is done, but the cockpit textures still have some way to go – right now they only cover the pedestal and main flight displays as well as the autopilot panel.
On systems functionality the JustFlight team boldly claim straight out of the gate that every single system will be modelled, including those which are operated from the flight engineer’s seat.
Moving onto navigation, we have confirmed support for VOR to VOR navigation, RNAV, and for the first time in MSFS, a receiver INS (inertial navigation system) unit. This consists of sensors, normally gyroscopes and accelerometers, which measure changes in the aircraft’s velocity and acceleration. With that info, they can accurately determine the vehicle’s velocity, and with that it can also then work out where on the earth you are without the need for a satellite connection. These days, INS systems are typically used in conjunction with GPS and other systems for maximum accuracy and failsafe redundancy.
Finally, the team again confirm that product will ship with both engine options and different soundsets for each, multiple instrument panel and autopilot panel configurations, an EFB with Simbrief and Navigraph integration, and “a plethora” of liveries.
FSElite will be keeping you updated with further developments on JustFlight’s A300B4 Professional as we get them. To keep updated with all the other news and information coming out of this weekend’s FSExpo as and when it breaks, be sure to follow and monitor our rolling newsfeed over at the expo hub, available at fselite.net/flightsimexpo-2023-hub/