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Poland receives first new build Boeing 737-800 BBJ2 for VIP transport

Polish Air Force Boeing 737-800 BBJ2
Photo: Polish Armaments Inspectorate

The Polish defense procurement agency has taken delivery of the first of two new Boeing 737 VIP transport aircraft that will carry top government and military officials.

The aircraft, which will be named after the prominent statesman Roman Dmowski, landed at the Okęcie military and public airport in Warsaw on October 7. It was flown from France to Poland by Polish military pilots from the 1st Transport Aviation Base.

Delivery of the aircraft, with tail number 0111, is part of a contract between Poland and Boeing from March 2017. Boeing delivered the first unit, a passenger variant with tail number 0110, in November of the same year.

The delivery of the two new airframes is running late as they had initially been expected to be handed over by 2020. The second new 737 is expected to be delivered “in the near future,” the Polish defense ministry said.

In addition to specialized medical equipment, the Polish 737-800 BBJ2s feature encrypted radio and satellite communication, military aviation systems, such as the TACAN military navigation system, as well identification friend or foe (IFF) Mode 5 systems. They are also equipped with active and passive defense systems, including the Elbit Systems’ J-MUSIC directed counter infra-red counter measure (DIRCM) systems optimized for protection against surface-to-air missiles fired from MANPADS.

The 737s will complement the two smaller Gulfstream G550 planes delivered to the Polish defense ministry for the same role in 2017.

BBJ is a designation for the business jet variant of the 737 commercial airliners, which has been modified into numerous military models, including the Wedgetail, Poseidon, and C-40 variants.