The P-40 is probably the most recognizable of the Curtiss Aircraft Company’s designs. Developed from the P-36A in 1938 the P-40 was technologically inferior to the fighters then in production and development elsewhere in the world. However, it was ordered in large numbers by the U.S. Army and in smaller numbers by the British and French primarily because it could be built quickly and in large numbers using existing production lines. The P-40E model was upgraded with six wing mounted .50 caliber machine guns in place of the original four wing guns. The P-40 remained in production until 1944 and served throughout the war, despite being superseded by newer designs. Curtiss built a total of 13,738 aircraft, by far the largest production run of any Curtiss design. This aircraft has been reconstructed from the parts of several P-40s.
Curtiss Aircraft Company
49th Fighter Group, 9th Fighter Squadron, Papua New Guinea, 1942
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