Air India to get first Dreamliner by Dec

US aerospace giant Boeing said on Wednesday it would deliver the first of 27 Dreamliner aircraft ordered by Air India between October and December -- a delay of several years.

"Air India will receive the first 787 delivery in the fourth quarter of 2011," Dinesh Keskar, Boeing India's president, told reporters at the Aero India 2011 show in Bangalore. Air India has ordered 27 of the troubled 787 Dreamliner aircraft, at an estimated cost of $4.5 billion.

The first delivery had reportedly been slated for late 2008 but was rescheduled numerous times. In August last year, Air India said it would seek around $840 million in compensation because of the delays.

India's biggest private airline Jet Airways has also ordered 10 Dreamliners, but Dinesh declined to announce a delivery schedule for those.   

The Dreamliner was heralded as a new generation of highly fuel-efficient mid-sized aircraft, but Boeing has encountered difficulties in bringing the plane to market due to its use of composite materials as well as integrating production at various sites.

In December, Boeing said it had installed updated power system software and conducted rigorous reviews to confirm flight readiness after it had to halt tests due to an electrical fire that forced an emergency landing.