Air Power Series>1:48 die-cast display model>P-47>HA8409

P-47D Thunderbolt 419698, French GCII/5 'Lafayette', Amberieu, France 1944
General Background
The Republic Aviation P-47 "Thunderbolt" entered service in May 1942 with the introduction of the P-47B. It had a "Razorback", a high dorsal spine behind the side-ways opening canopy that reduced visibility. As improvements were made a "D" variant was produced with 12,602 being manufactured. The British developed a sliding bubble canopy for their Typhoon and this was adopted by the USAAF starting with the P-47D-5. With its ability to survive enemy fire along with impressive armament and bomb load the P-47 excelled at ground attack roles.
The Aircraft
In December 1943 GC II/5 Lafayette was one of the first French units to receive the P-47D before moving to Corsica from North Africa in May 1944. They were attached to the U.S. 57th FG as a fighter-bomber unit. After the success of "Operation Dragoon" the French units moved back to France with GC II/5 Lafayette arriving at Ambérieu on September 7, 1944. The USAAF delivered 446 P-47s to the Free French Air Force that equipped 7 Groupes de Chasse (GC). Many of the P-47s were later transferred to Algeria.
Specifications :
Total Number Produced: 12,602 most numerous variant
Crew: 1
Length: 36 ft. 1 in. (11 m)
Wingspan: 40 ft. 9 in. (12.42 m)
Height: 14 ft. 8 in. (4.47 m)
Engine: 1 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-59 twin-row radial, 2,535 hp (1,890 kW)
Maximum Speed: 433 mph @ 30,000 ft (697 km/h @ 9,145 m)
Service Ceiling: 43,000 ft. (13,100 m)
Rate Of Climb: 3,120 ft/min (15.9 m/s)
Range: 800 mi. combat, 1,800 mi. ferry (1,290 km combat / 2,900 km ferry)
Armament: 8 x .50 in. (12.7 mm) M2 Browning machine guns w/ 3,400 rounds
Maximum 2,500 lbs (1,134 kg) of bombs
10 x 5 in. (127 mm) unguided rockets