United Latest 737-900ER taxiing at Boeing Field

United’s latest 737-900ER, taxiing at Boeing Field

On Wednesday April 16th, United took delivery of its latest 737, but this one was special.

A 737-900ER was delivered from Boeing Field, marking a special occasion for not only Boeing but also United.  The aircraft was the 8,000th 737 to roll out of the Renton factory, and became one of over 550 of the type to be delivered to United since its inception.

United Airlines was the launch customer for the Boeing 737 and its first 737-200 was delivered in 1967. It' is seen here nose to nose with a United Airlines Boeing 247 from 1933.

United Airlines was the launch customer for the Boeing 737; its first 737-200 was delivered in 1967. It is seen here nose-to-nose with a United Airlines Boeing 247 from 1933. Photo: Boeing

Since the first flight of the 737-series on April 9th, 1967, this latest aircraft marks a new milestone in a very long history. The first US airline to take delivery of the 737 was United, and it is a fitting tribute that they took delivery of the latest and most current version of the aircraft.

The 737-900ER, which can accommodate up to 179 passengers (in the two-class configuration United uses) is a far cry from the original 737-200, which could only hold 109!

Bonus: Boeing Delivers the 7,500th 737 in 2013!

“We’re thrilled to celebrate this huge achievement with Boeing,” said Ron Baur, vice president of fleet, United Airlines. “The 737 has been an integral part of our narrowbody fleet and we are pleased to continue this tradition by being the North American launch customer for the new 737 MAX 9.”

It should be noted that, for a while, it looked like United had moved past the 737; in 2009 they actually flew their “last” 737 flight, retiring their 737 “classic” fleet in lieu of the narrow-body offerings from Airbus.  It wasn’t until the merger with Continental (which was a big 737 Next Gen operator) that United got back in to the game.

The 8000th 737 departs Boeing Field on it's Delivery Flight to United - Photo: Boeing

The 8,000th 737 departs Boeing Field on its delivery flight to United – Photo: Boeing

Over the years, Boeing has produced endless numbers of 737s out of the tiny factory in the Seattle suburb of Renton. The 737 has has evolved from just a workhorse into an aviation powerhouse.

Holding the title of the world’s best selling aircraft, there are now almost as many 737s as all of the aircraft Airbus has produced.  Yep that is right, Airbus just topped over 8,000 total aircraft last August, and as 39 aircraft a month roll out of the Renton factory, the 737 should outstrip that mark very soon!

The latest United 737 spots a logo to show that it is number 8000 - Photo: Boeing

The latest United 737 sports a logo to show that it is number 8,000 – Photo: Boeing

Bonus: Check out all our Stories on the Boeing Renton Factory

Even though this was aircraft number 8,000 to roll out of the factory, there are still another 3,700 planes on order. With the new 737 MAX due to fly in 2016, there will be many more 737s to come in the future. With the rate the 737 is going, it is likely that the model could be flying 100 years after its first flight — now that is an accomplishment.

CORRESPONDENT - SEATTLE, WA. Mal is an Australian native who has been a huge fan of airlines and aviation and currently works in airport-related operations. Email: malcolm@airlinereporter.com

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Just shows how good the 737 is. Will the A320 still be sold in 30 years?


@Bryan: Probably, as the A320 family has accumulated a backlog of more than 737’s (3700 planes, as the article indicated).

I love that picture of the first delivered! 1 flight attendant sitting on the nose , the other not daring to due to the downward angle I suspect! The beginning of OH&S!


Launch customer for the B737 was LH not UA 🙁

Alan Reusser

LH got 737-100’s…UA got 737-200’s.

Rich A. Demico

Amazing that so uncomfortable airplane have such success, I rather fly a wider A320 than feel cramped like sardine. I cannot understand why instead of improving the very comfy 757 and making it more efficient Boeing choose a passenger poorly design airplane.

For those new to 737 lore, the first 271 were built at BFI because Renton had no room at the inn, what with the 707 and 727 still going!

And, being that I still have a little railfan in me, every 737 fuselage has made its first trip (from Wichita to the PNW) by train!

Mike H.

Pete Lagerman

The caption did say …”The first US airline to take delivery…”

I flew one of the original -200’s from Guam to Tinan, Taiwan in 5+37 and no long range fuel tanks. Would be much easier with the new ones!

boeing did an AMAZING job with the 737! congrats guys!!!! 8,000 wow!!!

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