The first Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental comes out of the paint hangar all wrapped up. Won't know the livery until Sunday. Photo by Boeing.

The first Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental comes out of the paint hangar all wrapped up. Won't know the livery until Sunday. Photo by Boeing.

Sneaky Boeing. Last night the first Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental was moved from the paint hangar back to the Boeing factory. I have been trying to find out what livery the aircraft was and was hoping that a keen eye might have caught it out in the open. However, Boeing was smart enough to wrap the 747-8I up like a present. Guess we will have to wait until tomorrow.

This first Boeing 747-8I is a Boeing Business Jet (BBJ) and will be going to a government buyer. Boeing is not saying what government will be taking ownership of the aircraft. Since the plane will most likely have a custom livery done before delivery, the livery on the plane now really could be anyone’s guess.

Remember, Boeing will be doing a live webcast of the event at at 11am PST. Make sure to watch.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF & FOUNDER - SEATTLE, WA. David has written, consulted, and presented on multiple topics relating to airlines and travel since 2008. He has been quoted and written for a number of news organizations, including BBC, CNN, NBC News, Bloomberg, and others. He is passionate about sharing the complexities, the benefits, and the fun stuff of the airline business. Email me:
Updated: Boeing’s First 747-8 Intercontinental Unveiled During Roll Out (with more photos)

Hey David,

I am guessing it is in the new boeing airplane “light” livery, much like the 747-8F airplane. The engine cowlings appear to be all white and I think I read that they took this plane into paint on Friday? If so and they already have it out, then I would doubt they had the time / hours to do a full on Introduction paint job like the initial 787. Will be fun to see. Who knows, maybe it is Lufthansa paint scheme.


Boeing is really playing this up that it will be a big surprise. If they go through all this and it turns out to be the light livery, I will be greatly disappointed. I have a feeling no one will be disappointed though!

The cowlings are insignificant when it comes to the Boeing liveries, as both the full livery and light livery both have white engines. Lufthansa has gray engines.

I know, that is what sets it off. However, they could pretty easily paint the engines in the factory to throw people off. At the end of the event today, Boeing made and announcement that we would be surprised of the look of the livery. It makes me think it won’t be business as usual.


Reverse psychology, everyone is expecting something really good, so we will all be surprised when it is either the light livery, or even more surprising, just totally white.

ha. I told them if it is the light livery or painted in gray for the government owner, I would be very upset. Many people would be very upset. They assured me none of us would be upset :).


Two things: If it is one of the Boeing liveries I will be disappointed, because that is to be expected.
Other thing: Lets see that beast uncovered to show the crappy new United livery and they announced United ordered 25 of them.

Rumor from speculation that ANA is the hidden secret..shhhh

Dr. Smith

That’s Amazing – what an amazing machine. I can’t wait until it climbs up into the air. Wow.

I am not upset, per se, but I am disappointed, so unoriginal, its the typical full livery with different, lamer, colors.

I think the livery in this Red and Orange look fantastic. Glad they at least decided to go with a variation of colors. I personally really like the current Boeing Livery weather all blue or new colors like this red and orange. It feels clean and modern. I wonder if the comments about red and orange = prosperity in some cultures is a hint or signal that some Asian carriers are currently in final negotiations for a large order or two and that this will be announced soon. That would be a great step forward for this fantastic new plane. Some airlines should take a look at these intro liveries by boeing, the graphics, swooping lines of the paint. I would love to see some of the US Legacy carriers adopt some of this styling for updated paint schemes… i.e. American.

The one thing I thought when they said “prosperity” was Asia, which was surprising. On the livery: I really don’t like it, I look at against the old one, and I think “Smisek.” It looks like they had no money and just hired a 3 year old to design the livery, which consisted of a color change, like the UA/CO was a name change. United new livery (which I totally hate) > Boeing red livery.

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