Ba.65 Nibbio file photo [5564]

Ba.65 Nibbio

ManufacturerSocietà Italiana Ernesto Breda
Primary RoleFighter
Maiden Flight1 September 1935


ww2dbaseThe Ba.65 Nibbio ("Hawk") aircraft were originally designed by Antonio Parano and Giuseppe Panzeri in 1935 to serve both as fighters as well as ground-attack aircraft. In 1936, the first 81 examples were sold to the Italian Air Force Regia Aeronautica. In 1937, 23 were sent to Spain during the Spanish Civil War, where they were used as fighters with relative success; the 11 survivors remained in the Spanish Air Force as gifts. In 1938, 25 aircraft were sold to Iraq, which were later used against the British. 20 were sold to Chile while Portugal purchased another 10. In a rather strange move, Russia purchased 10 copies for purpose of testing, which might have inspired certain components of the Il-2 aircraft. As aircraft technology advancing so quickly, they became outdated by the start of the European War as they became too vulnerable to modern fighters due to slow speed and lack of maneuverability. Production ceased by Jul 1939 as a direct result; a total of 218 aircraft were built by Breda and Caproni by that time. Nevertheless, they remained in service, particularly in North Africa, due to war demands. One of the reasons why they continued to serve with success in North Africa was because the British fielded an even older model, Gladiator, at the start of the Desert War, which were not capable enough to intercept Ba.65 Nibbio aircraft on ground-attack missions. They suffered heavy losses to anti-aircraft weapons, however, and by Feb 1941 most of them were no longer operational, which marked the practical end of their service life.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: Feb 2008


MachineryOne Fiat A.80 RC.41 air-cooled radial engine rated at 1,000hp
Armament2x7.7mm machine guns, 2x12.7mm Breda-SAFAT machine guns, 200kg of bombs internally, 400kg of bombs externally
Span12.10 m
Length9.30 m
Height3.20 m
Weight, Empty2,400 kg
Weight, Maximum2,950 kg
Speed, Maximum430 km/h
Service Ceiling6,300 m
Range, Normal550 km


Ba.65 Nibbio aircraft in flight, 1930s

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. C. Badias says:
11 Jun 2013 11:53:11 AM

The BA65 was a single engine plane (see photo, it is evident). Pls correct error.
2. Commenter identity confirmed C. Peter Chen says:
13 Jun 2013 09:11:16 AM

C. Badias - The error has been corrected, thank you for pointing that out!

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Ba.65 Nibbio aircraft in flight, 1930s

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