Hello there, everybody! After years of waiting, the wall of 757 rework requests has burst, and now hordes of proposed liveries have begun white walking into the Seven Kingdoms of Infinite Flight. Iberia, before it was forced to consolidate its fleet in 2006, operated over 30 examples of the 757, making it one of the largest users of that aircraft in the world (well, before Iberia began its love affair of sorts with Airbus’ A320s). Most of those aircraft were purchased brand-new, and with just over 13 years of service with the airline (starting in 1993), they provided Iberia with the flexibility needed to expand their medium-haul routes (for example, to Istanbul and to Dakar) so that their A340 fleet could focus more on the long-haul routes to cities like Buenos Aires and Los Angeles that they’re better known for today.
Iberia’s 757 fleet didn’t end their careers once they were sold off by the cash-strapped airline- many of them (in fact, the vast majority of those airframes- a solid 14 out of 30 flew directly to Reykjavik once their time in Spain was up) ended up forming the backbone of Icelandair’s medium-to-long-haul route network. KrasAir took delivery of four of the Sky Ferraris, and utilized them on routes within Russia and to the Central Asian states before ceasing operations in 2008 (and, of course, Icelandair bought them when their airframes went into storage); and DHL, finally, took over 2 of the remaining aircraft and converted them into the freighters that form a profitable part of their intra-EU cargo business. (I couldn’t find out what happened to the remaining 10 aircraft, but I assume that they were either broken up or sold to a third party, who, knowing their market, sold on the aircraft to Icelandair.)
In short, although this aircraft hasn’t flown under the Spanish flag for over 14 years, Iberia’s fleet of 757s was crucial in expanding that airline’s network of international routes and setting it up for the purchasing spree that it went on with their A320s and A340s, and their airframes can still be seen plying the skies for newer owners. Those 30 aircraft weren’t too well known during their career with Iberia, but given their history and the mark they left on Europe’s aviation history by giving Icelandair and Iberia the fiscal wiggle room that they needed to survive the twin financial crises of 2006-8 and of 2016 (in Iceland itself), I think that it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to have their liveries added in to Infinite Flight. Thanks for reading, y’all, and one day, hopefully, we’ll see these red, yellow, and white birds in the virtual skies!
(disclaimer: all photos here are from other photographers; credit for their work is solely theirs)