Macchi MC-172 Lancia

IThe Macchi M.C. 72 was an experimental seaplane designed and built by the Italian aircraft company Macchi Aeronautica. The M.C. 72 held the world speed record for all aircraft for five years. In 1933 and 1934, it set a world record for speed over water which still stands to this day.

After this feat the Regia Aeronautica expressed its interest in the aircraft as a possible fighter. Although Macchi was working on the MC-200 fighter at the time, it developed a fighter variant of the MC-72, called the MC-172 Lancia. The floats were replaced by a retractable undercarriage and an external radiator was added to the surface cooling system of the MC-72.

Because there was no space in the fuselage or wings for any weapons, two 12.7mm machine guns were housed in pods situated on the wing next to the fuselage. The new fighter first flew in October 1937 and was put to the test by the Regia Aeronautica in 1938.

The performance proved disappointing however. The added weight of the military equipment and the extra drag of the radiator and weapons meant that the top speed was only slighter higher than that of the MC-200. Also the engine, Fiat AS.6 Liquid-cooled V24 engine, proved very unreliable.

The Regia Aeronatica persisted in the development of the Lancia however and 125 aircraft were ordered in 1938. They were delivered in 1939 and saw limited action during 1939 and 1940.


The model

The model is the SMER MC-72 kit with an undercarriage of a Me-109.

Last updated: 02/01/2011