P.108 file photo [4038]

P.108

CountryItaly
ManufacturerPiaggio Aero Industries
Primary RoleHeavy Bomber
Maiden Flight1 October 1939

Contributor:

ww2dbaseThe P.108 heavy bombers were the only four-engined aircraft to be used by the Italian air force Regia Aeronautica during WW2, though only about 36 or 163 were produced between 1939 and 1943. The P.108 bombers carried some of the most advanced technology in the Italian aircraft technology at the time, including engines more powerful than those on American B-17 bombers, two remotely controlled gun turrets, and an all-metal body. Four variants were designed, but most of the ones built were of the P.108B bomber design. Some P.108C passenger liners with 36- to 56-passenger capacity and P.108T transports were built; they served with both Italian and German forces. Among the first training missions in 1941 involving P.108 bombers was one piloted by Captain Bruno Mussolini, son of the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, which resulted in a crash during landing, killing him. The bombers first saw action with the 274th Long-Range Bombardment Group in night bombing raids over Gibraltar in Oct 1942, but poor maneuverability often hindered the potential of these well-powered bombers, resulting in higher-than-expected loss rate. By the time of the Italian surrender in 1943, most of the ones in Italian service had already been destroyed. Fifteen surviving P.108C and P.108T aircraft were captured by Germany; in 1944, when German troops withdrew from Crimea, they were used by German Luftflotte 2 during the evacuation.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: Jun 2007

SPECIFICATIONS

P.108B
MachineryFour Piaggio P.XII RC.35 radial engines rated at 1,500hp each
Armament5x12.7mm Breda-SAFAT machine guns, 2x7.7mm Breda-SAFAT machine guns, 3,500kg of bombs internally
Crew6
Span32.00 m
Length22.30 m
Height6.00 m
Wing Area135.00 m
Weight, Empty17,325 kg
Weight, Maximum29,885 kg
Speed, Maximum430 km/h
Service Ceiling8,500 m
Range, Normal3,520 km

Photographs

Close up of the nose of P.108 bomber, date unknownP.108 bomber resting at an airfield, date unknownP.108 heavy bomber at rest, 1942-1943




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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
19 Mar 2011 05:37:03 PM

wow. the Italians do love triple nines.

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P.108 Heavy Bomber Photo Gallery
Close up of the nose of P.108 bomber, date unknown
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Famous WW2 Quote
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