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  • Macchi C.205 Veltro (Greyhound) Fighter

    Like the Reggiane Re.2005 and FIAT G.55, the Macchi C.205 made use of the German Daimler-Benz DB 605 series engine.

     Updated: 5/25/2016; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.MilitaryFactory.com

    The Macchi C.205 "Veltro" ("Greyhound") - also known as "MC.205" - was a further evolution of the Macchi C.202 "Folgore" of 1941. Indeed, the aircraft retained the basic design lines of its progenitor but added the powerful German Dimler-Benz DB 605 series engine to the mix, producing an excellent Italian fighter of World War 2. Through a more refined design, the C.205 proved itself a top-flight performer on par with some of the best fighter developments of the war and incorporated a machine gun/cannon mix armament with ground-strike capabilities to boot. However, line was only produced in the hundreds by war's end and never made a large imprint on the Italian war situation before the surrender of September 1943. It also served with German and Croatian forces before the end and found a post-war career Egypt. The last elements were retired in 1950 (Egypt).

    The Italians formed a collection of strong fighter types under the "Series 5" name and these included the Macchi C.205, the Fiat G.55, and the Reggiane Re.2005. The common denominator across all three designs was use of the excellent German Daimler-Benz DB 605 series engine which allowed Italian industry to concentrate more on development and production of fighters than a costly, temperamental powerplant. Fiat undertook local, licensed production of the DB 605 as the RA.1050 RC58 "Tifone" ("Typhoon") which simplified matters considerably. When project head Mario Castoldi mated the engine to the existing airframe of the C.202 "Folgore", the new C.205 "Veltro" designation was born. Alternatively, the aircraft was also known as the "MC.205" for "Macchi Castoldi".

    First flight of the re-engined aircraft was recorded on April 19th, 1942 and its lines clearly showcased its C.202 origins for little had been changed in the new design. The aircraft continued the streamlined look established by the Folgore including its low-set monoplane wings, raised fuselage spine, and long nose assembly. The cockpit was set at midships, aft of a engine compartment at front, with the pilot under a framed canopy hinged to open to starboard. The engine drove a three-bladed propeller assembly in the usual way. The fuselage cross section was well-rounded to promote aerodynamic efficiency with the needed internal volume for avionics, fuel, and armament. The tail unit consisted of a single short, rounded vertical tail fin with low-mounted horizontal planes. All of the wing surfaces held rounded wingtips to promote an elegant shape. The tail-dragger undercarriage was wholly retractable including its little tail wheel. One of the notable external changes in the C.205 was its installation of two oil radiators along the side of the fuselage.

    The Fiat RA.1050 RC58 Tifone was an inverted V12, liquid-cooled, supercharged form that outputted at 1,475 horsepower. Performance included a maximum speed of 400 miles per hour with a range out to 590 miles and the aircraft's service ceiling reached 37,730 feet. Compared to the older C.202, the C.205 was both faster and with a much improved rate-of-climb and agility was further refined in the new mount. The C.202 managed a top speed of 372 miles per hour with a range out to 475 miles with only its service ceiling matching that of the C.205.

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    Macchi C.205V Veltro (Greyhound) Technical Specifications

    Service Year: 1943
    Type: Fighter
    National Origin: Italy
    Manufacturer(s): Aeronautica Macchi - Italy
    Production Total: 262

    Structural (Crew Space, Dimensions and Weights)

    Operating Crew: 1
    Length: 29.04 feet (8.85 meters)
    Width: 34.71 feet (10.58 meters)
    Height: 9.97 feet (3.04 meters)

    Weight (Empty): 5,690 lb (2,581 kg)
    Weight (MTOW): 7,513 lb (3,408 kg)

    Installed Power and Standard Day Performance

    Engine(s): 1 x FIAT RA.1050 RC.58 Tifone ("Typhoon") 12-cylinder engine developing 1,475 horsepower.

    Maximum Speed: 399 mph (642 kph; 347 knots)
    Maximum Range: 646 miles (1,040 km)
    Service Ceiling: 36,089 feet (11,000 meters; 6.84 miles)

    Armament / Mission Payload

    2 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT heavy machine guns in upper forward fuselage.
    2 x 20mm MG 151 cannons in wings

    Up to 705lbs of external ordnance (2 x 350lb bombs) underwing.

    Global Operators / Customers

    Croatia; Egypt; Nazi Germany; Italy

    Model Variants (Including Prototypes)

    C.205 - Prototype Example; fitting 2 x 12.7mm heavy machine guns and 2 x 7.7mm rifle-caliber machine guns.

    C.205V - Initial Production Model Designation; some derived from existing MC.202 series fighters.

    C.205S - Long-Range Escort; additional fuel tank for improved range; sans fuselage machine gun systems; 18 conversion models from MC.205V.

    C.205N "Orione" - Proposed Development fitting DB 605 series engine with new wing with larger span and area; revised fuselage; 1 x 20mm MG 151 cannon in fuselage.

    C.205N-1 - Proposed High-Altitude Interceptor; single prototype example constructed; fitting 4 x 12.7mm heavy machine guns in fuselage with 1 x 20mm cannon in nose.

    C.205N-2 - Proposed High-Altitude Interceptor; single prototype example constructed; fitting 3 x 20mm cannons with 2 x 12.7mm heavy machine guns.

    C.206 - Fitted with Daimler-Benz DB 603 series engine; 4 x 12.7mm heavy machine guns in fuselage with 1 x 20mm cannon in nose; single prototype completed.

    C.207 - Proposed fighter development; fitted with Daimler-benz DB 603 series engine; 4 x 20mm cannons.