Qantas unveils its “next generation” Dreamliner cabins and an update to its iconic Kangaroo logo

The Boeing 787-900 Dreamliner is finally coming to the Australian carrier Qantas in 2017, and with it will be a facelift to the brand, and the introduction of a brand new, next generation cabin that will debut on the aircraft due to enter their fleet this time next year.

Qantas Group CEO, Alan Joyce, revealed the new design together with the new Business Suites and Economy seats that will feature on the B787 at a special event in Sydney.

“We wanted to make sure our brand remained familiar but we also wanted it to be more modern and dynamic, like the 787 and like Qantas. When we looked at the history, we found that the logo has been updated around the time of a game-changing new aircraft joining the fleet. It’s a tradition that goes back to the Lockheed Constellation in 1947, the B747-300 in 1984 and the A380 in 2007,” said Mr. Joyce.


Indeed, this is only the fifth time the iconic Roo has been given an update since its introduction in 1944, and the first since 2007 when it was updated alongside the arrival of the Airbus A380.

Qantas consultant designer, Marc Newson, in partnership with Australian design agency Houston Group, oversaw the new design. “The Qantas logo is one of the most recognisable in the world. This re-design aims to retain the fundamental essence of the flying kangaroo but also move the brand forward,” said Mr. Newson.

“This new brand is more streamlined and the shading behind the kangaroo gives a better sense of movement and depth. A silver band now extends from the tail to the rear of the fuselage, to give a more premium feel. The typography for the word Qantas, which measures almost two metres high on the 787, has been carefully streamlined. And Qantas will appear on the aircraft’s belly, so you can tell when it’s the national carrier flying overhead.”

Here’s a detailed look at what to expect from the makeover:


Though we have to wait until next year to explore the new 787 Dreamliners, the new designs will start to appear across the Qantas network from today, coinciding with the official roll out of new pilot and cabin crew uniforms, which had already been announced. All aircraft are expected to be updated with the new branded in time for the airline’s centenary in 2020.

As for their next generation cabins on board their flagship 787-9 Dreamliner next year, the aircraft will seat 236 passengers across its three cabins – Business, Premium Economy and Economy. Only Business and Economy were unveiled this week – their promise of “a class leading experience and a revolutionary new seat” for Premium Economy won’t be revealed until early next year.

What to expect in Business


  • The Business Suite will be an update on the version currently operating in their Airbus A330 fleet, sitting in a 1-2-1 configuration, giving everyone direct aisle access and the ability to recline during take off and landing (perfect for those short haul red eyes).
  • One change to the suites will allow passengers to adjust the divider between each seat to provide a higher level of privacy.

What to expect in Economy


  • Economy will have an extra inch of seat pitch compared to the Qantas A380
  • The seat is brand-new and features a personal device holder; USB ports; more storage areas; a seat-back mood light designed to minimise disturbance for other passengers; and a high-definition entertainment touchscreen that is five per cent larger.
  • The seats also feature an updated version of the popular Qantas ‘footnet’ first introduced on the A380, designed to cradle the legs during sleep.
  • The Dreamliner cabin interiors and new economy seat, designed by Australian industrial designer David Caon, are a progression of the Qantas aesthetic established by Marc Newson.

Alan Joyce said that these changes had been designed with passenger feedback and longer routes in mind, “Many of the cabin design elements reflect what our customers have told us. Personal storage rates really highly, so we’ve created extra space in Economy for customers to store their personal devices and water bottles,” he said.

“We’re proud that our new Economy seat includes features other carriers reserve for Premium Economy. We’re also redesigning the in-flight experience for the Dreamliner, from rethinking our menus to making better use of the self-service bars during different phases of flight,” added Mr Joyce.

We’ll find out more about where the Dreamliner will go in the coming months, and the first flights will go on sale before Christmas. If you’d like some indication of what to expect, the 787-9 is intended to gradually take over the airline’s 747 routes. So definitely plan to fly over the Pacific Ocean on this one.

For more details, head to the official


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Larry Heath

Founding Editor and Publisher of the AU review. You can follow him on Twitter @larry_heath or on Instagram @larryheath.