LV-WFN at Buenos Aires Aeroparque (AEP) on 23Jan11. (Phil Perry Photo)
On 26Feb13, Austral MD-81, LV-WFN (c/n 48025/952) was flown from Cordoba (COR), where it had been stored since retirement from the airline's fleet over a year ago, to the Museo Nacional de Aeronautica at the Moron Air Force Base just west of Buenos Aires for preservation and future display. The approx. 700km / 438 mile ferry flight was flown with the aircraft unpressurized and with the landing gear down.
This is a significant aircraft in the history of Austral as it was the first MD-80 series plane delivered to the airline (of an original order of three examples). The aircraft was delivered with registration N10027 on 08Jan81 and was re-registered LV-WFN on 16Dec93. Its first flight was on 26Aug80 and it accumulated 70,445 flight hours over 60,351 cycles in its service life.
LV-WFN was delivered with 155 economy-class seats, reconfigured to 140 economy and 8 first-class seats in 2004 and again to 160 economy-class seats in recent years.
The plane was delivered with Pratt & Whitney JT8D-209 engines which were replaced with two -219 variants on 30Dec95 for standardization of the fleet. These will soon be replaced with two -217A's when the plane goes on display.
One 737-200 in full 1975 Aerolineas Argentinas colors and two BAC-111's are also stored at Moron, but one of the latter is located in a restricted area and the other is in somewhat derelict condition.