Pilots often describe the 757 as a “sports car,” but that’s only really true of the performance, particularly when light. Conversely, the handling characteristics are surprisingly nondescript, even stately, and when I first started flying the airplane, I was a bit disappointed. Over time, I came to realize the handling is almost perfectly neutral. The 757 isn’t a fingertip airplane like the 767, but you don’t have to wrestle it around either. Control response rates aren’t rapid, but neither are they delayed. Pitch, roll and yaw are just about perfectly coupled. It’s an exceedingly easy airplane to land well once you adjust to the increased cockpit height. The big rudder makes quick work of both V1 cuts and monster crosswinds. In short, the 757 flies exactly like you’d expect a good, honest, dependable classic airliner to fly. There are really only three things I’d change about it if I could: The cockpit window shades are terrible, the lack of a good N1 sync drives my internal multiengine instructor batty, and the flight-guidance panel kicks off VNAV when capturing a preselected altitude. That’s it. Fix those things, maybe replace some steam gauges with glass, and from a pilot’s perspective, you have the perfect narrow-body airliner for the next 40 years.