Iranian F-14 Tomcat fighter jets get a modern “splinter” color scheme

The photo in this post depicts the first Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force F-14AM (“Modernized”) landing at Tehran Mehrabad International Airport in April 2012.

Iran still operates some Tomcats that are being modernized to extend their operative life. Domestic upgrades include avionics, weapons (R-73E, AIM-54A+ “Fakkur”, AIM-54A, AIM-7E and AIM-9J are among the air to air missiles adapted to the aircraft’s fire control system) and color scheme: indeed the plane was give a  three-tone Asian Minor II camouflage pattern resembling the one adopted by Russian 4th and 5th generation fighter planes and U.S. Aggressors.

Image credit: Babak Taghvaee


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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. This paint scheme does not look new. I swear I’ve seen lots of past pictures with this paint scheme (unless I’ve seen a lot of F-5s with it and this is the first F-14).

  2. A tribute to the Iranians resourcefulness that they have kept such an elderly aircraft flying. Cant imagine after sales service is so hot.

  3. well, thank you IRIAF for potentially justifying millions spent on all those fancy splinter liveries for the aggressors…

  4. How are they keeping these F-14s in the air? I thought there was an arms embargo. These planes have to be 40 years old and I thought the civilian tech reps sabotaged them before they left the country.

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