Having first flown in 1982, the Boeing 757 was designed in parallel with the 767. That said, while it shares some features with the larger 767, it was designed to serve completely different markets resulting in completely different characteristics.

Boeing provided the 757 in three variants, each with different capabilities. Across the three variants, the Boeing 757 family includes aircraft with specs in the following ranges:

**Length:**155 ft 3 in – 178 ft 7 in (47.32 – 54.43 m)**Height:**44 ft 3 in – 45 ft 1 in (13.49 – 13.74 m)**Wingspan:**124 ft 10 in (38.05 m)**Cabin width:**139.3 in (3.54 m)**Maximum design taxi weight:**221,000 – 271,000 lbs (100,250 – 122,930 kg)**Maximum design take-off weight:**220,000 – 270,000 lbs (99,800 – 122,470 kg)**Maximum design landing weight:**198,000 – 224,000 lbs (89,800 – 101,610 kg)**Operating empty weight:**130,440 – 142,340 lbs (59,160 – 64,560 kg)**Range:**1,945 – 3,915 nmi (3,600 – 7,250 km)**Usable fuel:**11,276 – 11,490 US gals (42,680 – 43,495 l)**Fuel burn (1,000-nmi trip):**78.7 – 89.5 lbs per seat**Exit limit:**224 â€“ 279 passengers

## Boeing 757 Dimensions

As mentioned earlier, there are three variants of the 757 – the 757-200, 757-200PF, and 757-300.

That said, the 757-200 and 757-200PF are more or less the same except for one being a passenger plane and the other one a freighter. As such, the two share most of their dimensions.

### Length

When it comes to dimensions, the length is where the main difference between the -200/-200PF and -300 lies.

The shorter and much more popular 757-200 is 155 ft 3 in (47.32 m) long. The 757-200PF – being a freighter version of the same aircraft – comes in at the same length.

The longer and rarer (just 55 airframes were produced) 757-300 is 178 ft 7 in (54.43 m) long.

### Height

While the length and wingspan of an aircraft are fixed, its height varies depending on its weight which, in turn, depends on the type of seats and other equipment it carries, how much fuel is loaded, and so on. Because of this, Boeing provides a range of tail heights in its *Airplane Characteristics for Airport Planning* documents. The maximum heights specified in the document for the 757 are presented below.

The smaller and thus lighter 757-200s – both in the passenger and freighter – are at most 45 ft 1 in (13.74 m) high. The larger 757-300s are slightly lower at a maximum of 44 ft 9 in (13.64 m).

### Wingspan

The 757-200 and 757-300 have the same base wingspan of 124 ft 10 in (38.05 m).

That said, both of the variants can be retrofitted with winglets to improve fuel efficiency. These winglets, provided by Aviation Partners Incorporated, increase the wingspan by 9 ft 9 in for a total wingspan of 134 ft 7 in for winglet-equipped 757s.

### Cabin Width

Both passenger variants of the 757 have a cabin width of 139.3 in (3.54 m).

This allows for a single-aisle 3-3 layout in economy class. In business/domestic first class, the layout is typically 2-2 both for regular recliner seats as well as for lie-flat seats.

## Boeing 757 Weight

Below, we will look at the following weights of the 757:

**Maximum design taxi weight (MTW):**The maximum weight the aircraft can be when moving around an airport. This is the highest weight at which the aircraft can be operated at all (even though it cannot take off at this weight).**Maximum design take-off weight (MTOW):**The maximum weight the aircraft can be at the start of a take-off run.**Maximum design landing weight (MLW):**The maximum weight the aircraft can be when it touches down on a runway.**Operating empty weight (OEW):**Weight of the aircraft including things integral to its operation (unusable fuel, seats, etc.) and excluding usable fuel and payload.

Keep in mind that the exact specifications depend on factors such as the engines used (both the 757-200 and 757-300 came with multiple Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce engine options) and so ranges are provided.

### Design Weight Limits

Let’s start with the maximum take-off weight which is perhaps the most important of the different design weight limits. The passenger 757-200’s MTOW is 220,000 – 255,000 lbs (99,800 – 115,650 kg) while the freighter 757-200PF’s MTOW is slightly higher at 250,000 – 255,000 lbs (113,400 – 116,650 kg). In either case, the 255,000 lbs MTOW is limited to airports at altitudes below 1,500 ft. The larger 757-300 has, naturally, a higher MTOW – 270,000 lbs (122,470 kg) – too.

Accounting for the fuel needed for taxiing, the maximum design taxi weight for each of the variants is 1,000 lbs more than the corresponding MTOW.

As for the maximum landing weight, the 757-200’s is 198,000 – 210,000 lbs (89,800 – 95,250 kg) with the freighter version being able to land at the 210,000 lbs. The 757-300 can land weighing at most 224,000 lbs (101,610 kg).

Below is an overview of the maximum taxi weight, maximum take-off weight, and maximum landing weight ranges for all of the 757 variants:

### Operating Empty Weight

Operating empty weight depends not only on the aircraft itself but also on things that are outside the manufacturer’s control like the number and types of seats it is equipped with. That means that, for example, even two 757-200s with the exact same engines, could have a different operating empty weight.

Still, for reference, Boeing provides “typical case” operating empty weights for its aircraft including the 757. They are as follows:

*757-200:*130,440 – 130,730 lbs (59,160 – 59,300 kg)*757-300:*142,140 – 142,340 lbs (644,470 – 64,560 kg)

## Boeing 757 Range

The actual range of an aircraft depends on a variety of factors including the engines it is equipped with, its payload (i.e. the heavier the payload, the more fuel is burned), the required reserve fuel, and rules about how far an aircraft can be from its nearest diversion point.

Boeing’s reference range for the 757-200 is 2,290 – 3,915 nmi (4,240 – 7,250 km) with the aircraft being fuel volume limited at the higher end of the range. For the 757-300, the range is 1,945 – 3,845 nmi (3,600 – 7,120 km) with the same restriction on the higher end.

These ranges allow for the 757s to not only be used on short-haul flights but also on transcontinental flights in the United States and even transatlantic flights.

## Boeing 757 Usable Fuel and Fuel Burn

The fuel that an aircraft carries can be divided into two types – usable and unusable. As the names suggest, unusable fuel stays in the tanks while usable fuel is the fuel that can actually be burned on a trip and is what helps define an aircraft’s range.

At 210,000 lbs (95,260 kg), the larger 757-300 can carry the most usable fuel of the three variants. Because of the aircraft’s larger size, this does not translate to a longer range, though, as you could see in the previous section.

The passenger 757-200 can carry between 184,000 lbs (83,450 kg) and 188,000 lbs (85,300 kg) of usable fuel. The freighter 757-200PF can carry slightly more – i.e. 200,000 lbs (90,700 kg)

As one would expect due to economies of scale, the larger 757-300 burns slightly less fuel per passenger than the 757-200 all other things equal. Boeing provides the following fuel burn figures for the 757 operating a 1,000-nmi trip in a typical two-class configuration:

*757-200:*84.9 – 89.5 lbs (38.5 – 40.6 kg)*757-300:*78.7 – 83.3 lbs (35.7 – 37.8 kg)

## Boeing 757 Capacity

There are two ways to look at capacity – the theoretically highest number of passengers that a type is certified for (i.e. the number of passengers that could evacuate the aircraft in a timely manner) and the actual seating capacity which depends on how an airline decides to equip its aircraft. Even the same variant can have different exit limits based on emergency exit configuration.

The FAA exit limit for the 757-200 is 224 passengers if the aircraft is configured with overwing exits. An extra pair of doors instead of overwing exits, increases the exit limit to 239 passengers. For the 757-300, the exit limit is 279 passengers. The 757-200PF can carry up to 15 ULDs at 440 cubic feet each.

In real-world use, the actual seating capacity rarely reaches the exit limit. Below are a couple of actual 757-200 configurations in use by airlines:

*Icelandair:*184 (22+162)*United:*169 (16+153) or 176 (16+160) depending on the configuration

Below are some actual 757-300 configurations:

*Condor:*275*Delta:*234 (24+210)

## Summary

While the 757 is no longer in production and its numbers are dwindling, for years, the 757 was a popular aircraft thanks to its unique mix of specifications. That’s especially the case with the 757-200 of which almost 1,000 were built.

If you enjoyed reading this article, you might also want to learn about how the 757 compares with other aircraft types including the Boeing 767, 777, and 787, as well as the Airbus A321 of which the newer variants often serve as the 757’s replacement.