Qantas has celebrated its 95th anniversary with both a nod to its past and a look to the future.
The past, in the form of Retro Roo II, a Boeing 737-800 with registration VH-VXQ, was unveiled to invited guests, media and staff at the company’s Hangar 416 at Sydney Airport on Monday.
The airline’s second retro jet has been painted with the original scheme featured on Qantas’s first jet aircraft, the Boeing 707, when it entered service in 1959.
The livery features the the words “Australia’s Overseas Airline Qantas” on the fuselage, a red cheatline along the passenger windows and a Flying Kangaroo and the word Qantas on a white tail with two red stripes.
The aircraft landed in Sydney shortly before 0800 on Monday morning from Townsville, where it had been repainted by Flying Colours Aviation, and was towed to the hangar for the official presentation.
Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the aircraft represented “our past and our history, which is an amazing history” that stretched back 95 years to the day, when Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services (QANTAS) began.
“As we celebrate our 95th birthday today, I hope this livery inspires a sense of pride in what our national airline has achieved during all those years of taking Australians around the world and bringing them safely home again,” Joyce said.