Aviation of Word War II

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SAI.207
Истребитель
Ambrosini

SAI 207

The success of the SAI 7 trainer was quite expected for SAI Ambrosini, and the idea came up to create a full-fledged light fighter based on it. So at the end of 1941, the SAI.107 appeared, a wooden cantilever low-wing aircraft with a liquid-cooled engine. The characteristics of the SAI 107 fighter were quite encouraging, and without waiting for the completion of the tests, the Italian Air Force ordered two prototypes for comprehensive testing. The first prototype (number MM.441), equipped with an Isotta Frascini "Delta" RC.35 engine (705 hp), took off in early 1942 from the Castiglione del Lago airfield. The plane was flown by pilot Mario Facioli. On tests, the SAI 207 showed simply impressive performance - its maximum speed reached 630-640 km / h, and the ceiling reached 12,000 meters, while diving, the officially recorded speed reached 750 km / h. The new high-speed SAI.207 was perfect for the role of a high-speed interceptor, especially considering the fact of the increasing power of the Allied aviation.

However, the SAI.207 disaster that followed on December 5, 1942 buried Mario Faccioli under the rubble and interrupted the test cycle, the second prototype (MM.442) took off only in the spring of 1943. This prototype was distinguished by a complete set of weapons (two 12.7 mm and two 7.7 mm machine guns) and a more powerful "Delta" RC.40 engine. The aircraft's superior performance was confirmed and among its category of fighters, SAI.207 was voted the best. The Italian Air Force immediately ordered a pilot batch of 12 aircraft (numbers MM.8425 - MM.8436), built between March and June 1943.

SAI.207 Specifications
Crew 1
Dimensions
Wing span, m 9.00
Wing area, m² 13.90
Length, m 8.02
Height, m 2.40
Powerplant
1 × PE Isotta-Fraschini Delta RC40, power, hp 750
Weight, kg
Empty 1,750
Loaded weight 2,415
Performance
Maximum speed, km/h 625
Cruising speed, km/h 504
Rate of climb, m/min 800
Service range, km 850
Service ceiling, m 12,000
Armament
Two 12.7 mm Breda-SAFAT machine guns (175 rounds each)

For the first stage of military trials, we chose 83a Squadriglia from the 18o Gruppo CT. 3o Stormo CT. The first fighters began arriving on June 1, 1943, and remained there until September. Six SAI 207s were then transferred to 162a and 163a Squadriglia 161o Gruppo CT.

The opinions of the pilots who flew the SAI.207 were positive (although not everyone trusted a completely wooden machine), only the fighter could not be tested in combat conditions - the management of Regia Aeronautica had already matured plans for large-scale production of an improved modification of the SAI 403 fighter, which also received the sonorous name "Dardo" ("Arrow").

Only two aircraft (MM.8425 and 8433) flew south and took part in the battles. Two more aircraft were disassembled and packed for long-distance transportation, according to unverified data, the customer was Japan. This concludes the history of the aircraft, most of the machines were disassembled in 1946.

Photo Description

Drawing SAI.207

Bibliography

  • Encyclopedia of Military Equipment / Aerospace Publising /
  • Light Fighter - Interceptor Ambrosini S.A.I. 207 \ S.A.I. 403 "Dardo" / Andrey Krumkach /