What Happened To Iberia’s Boeing 727s?

As the Spanish national flag carrier, Iberia celebrates its 94th year in business, we take a look at what happened to its fleet of 30 Boeing 727-200s. Iberia took delivery of its first Boeing 727-200 in April 1972 and retired the aircraft from its fleet in
August of 2001.

What Happened To Iberia's Boeing 727s?
Iberia Used the Boeing 727 for its Airlink between Madrid and Barcelona. Photo: Iberia via Wikipedia

With seating for 153 passengers, Iberia deployed its Boeing 727s on European and North African routes. The aircraft was also used on the all-important Puente Aereo (Air Bridge) between Madrid and Barcelona. Remember that the high-speed rail link between the Spanish capital and Barcelona did not open until 2008. This meant that the air bridge was the preferred method of travel between the two Spanish metropolises.

A 727 was involved in Iberia’s worst accident

During their time with Iberia, Boeing 727s clocked more than 12 million kilometers (7.4 million miles) in the air while carrying 140 million passengers. The Boeing 727 was also used on many memorable occasions, including the evacuation of Spanish troops from the Spanish Sahara in 1975. Iberia also used its 727s to rescue refugees from Split during the Balkans war.

Unfortunately, the Boeing 727 also has the distinction of being involved in Iberia’s worst-ever accident. Iberia flight number 610 hit a television antenna on Mount Oiz, near Bilbao, on February 19, 1985, killing all 148 people aboard the aircraft.

Why did Iberia select the Boeing 727?

At the time, Iberia was looking for an aircraft that could be a workhorse on European and domestic routes, and the Boeing 727 seemed an ideal choice. Boeing designed the 727 to be a plane that could access smaller airports and land on runways insufficient for larger Boeing 707s. The Seattle planemaker developed an extensive, sophisticated flap system, allowing the plane to descend quickly while avoiding obstacles and buildings.

Iberia Boeing 727-200
The Boeing 727 could land at airports with short runways. Photo: M.Oertle via Flickr

Another huge selling point the plane possessed was a small gas-turbine engine auxiliary power unit (APU). Starting the engines without needing an external power source meant that Iberia could use its 727s at airports in developing countries.

Iberia’s Being 727-200s

According to the aviation data and statistics website ch-aviation the following is a list of Iberia’s Boeing 727-200s and their history:

  • Registration number EC-CBA was delivered on 5/12/73 and scrapped at Kingman, Arizona, on 4/4/2001.
  • Registration number EC-CBD was delivered on 4/3/73 and went to Iraq Airways on 27/01/2003. The aircraft is now listed as being beyond repair at Baghdad International (BGW).
  • Registration number EC-CBF was delivered on 1/04/2001 and went to Albarka Air on 4/03/2004 and then Teebah Airlines in 2005. In 2007 the aircraft went to Iraq’s Tigris Air and is now listed as being Stored at Aqaba King Hussein International (AQJ).
  • Registration number EC-CBG was delivered on 1/03/73 and was scrapped on 1/07/ 2007 at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD).
  • Registration number EC-CBH was delivered on 5/01/73 and went to Dasab Airlines on 30/3/2002. The aircraft is now listed as being stored at Bucharest Baneasa (BBU).
  • Registration number EC-CBI was delivered to Iberia on 2/02/73 and went to Albarka Air on 23/11/ 2001. The aircraft is listed as being scrapped at Abuja Nnamdi Azikiwe International (ABV) in Nigeria.
  • Registration number EC-CBJ was delivered to Iberia on 1/01/93 and went to Albarka Air on 22/01/2002. The aircraft is listed as being scrapped at Abuja Nnamdi Azikiwe International (ABV) in Nigeria.
  • Registration number EC-CBL was delivered to Iberia on 1/05/93 and was scrapped in Kingman, Arizona, in 2001.
  • Registration number EC-CFA was delivered to Iberia on 15/01/74 and was scrapped at Shannon International (SNN) in Ireland in 2001.
  • Registration number EC-CFB was delivered to Iberia on 22/01/74 and is now listed as being scrapped at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD) in 2000.
  • Registration number EC-CFD was delivered to Iberia on 6/02/74 and sold to Sierra Leones Sierra National Airlines in 2001. In 2003 the aircraft went to Iraqi Airways and is now listed as being beyond repair at Baghdad International (BGW).
  • Registration number EC-CFE was delivered to Iberia on 15/02/74 and is now listed as being on display at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD) since 2000.
  • Registration number EC-CFF was delivered to Iberia on 25/02/74 and has beemn in storage at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD) since 2001.
  • Registration number EC-CFG was delivered to Iberia on 7/03/74 and has been on display at Madrid’s Cuatro Vientos Airport (ECV) since 2001.
  • Registration number EC-CFH was delivered to Iberia on 20/03/74 and sold to Hawaiian Airlines in 2002. The aircraft is currently listed as being stored at an unknown location.
  • Registration number EC-CFI was delivered to Iberia on 2/04/74 and sold to Forces Aériennes du Benin in 2006. The aircraft is listed as having been scrapped at Johannesburg Oliver Reginald Tambo International(JNB) in 2006.
  • Registration number EC-CFK was delivered to Iberia on 9/05/74 and has been on display at Madrid’s Cuatro Vientos Airport (ECV) since 2000.
  • Registration number EC-CID was delivered to Iberia on 24/10/74 and scrapped at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD) in 2001.
  • Registration number EC-CIE was delivered to Iberia on 30/10/74 and sold to Trans Sahara Air in 2002. The aircraft was scrapped at Addis Ababa Bole International (ADD) in 2003.
  • Registration number EC-DCC was delivered to Iberia on 28/07/78 and sold to Mahfooz Aviation (Gambia) in 2001. The aircraft is listed as being stored at an unknown location.
  • Registration number EC-DCD was delivered to Iberia on 30/08/78 and scrapped at at Madrid Adolfo Suárez Barajas (MAD) in 2002.
  • Registration number EC-DCE was delivered to Iberia on 5/09/78 and sold to Hawaiian Airlines in 2003. In 2004 it was sold to African Express Airways and is now stored at Damascus Airport (DAM) in Syria.
  • Registration number EC-DDX was delivered to Iberia on 26/06/79 and has been on display at Doncaster/Sheffield Robin Hood (DSA) since 2001.
  • Registration number EC-DDZ was delivered to Iberia on 9/07/79 and sold to Mahfooz Aviation (Gambia) in 2001. The aircraft was scrapped in Kingman, Arizona, in 2003.
Iberia Boeing 727
The Iberia Boeing 727s had 153 seats. Photo: M.Oertle via Flickr

The last five Boeing 727-200 were delivered to Iberia between June and July 1979 at $12 million per plane. Iberia had negotiated with Boeing for a further five aircraft in 1980. They then canceled the delivery after signing a deal with Airbus for the A300.

Did you ever get to fly on one of Iberia’s Boeing 727-200s? If so, we would love to hear about it in the comments.

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