Fiat G.59 (Centauro)
Type: Fighter / Fighter-Trainer / Advanced Trainer Aircraft
Manufacturer(s): Fiat - Italy
Completing the World War 2-era Fiat G.55 fighter with the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine produced the post-war Fiat G.59 series for Italy and Syria.
Detailing the development and operational history of the Fiat G.59 (Centauro) Fighter / Fighter-Trainer / Advanced Trainer Aircraft. Entry last updated on 5/31/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com
After the war in 1946, Fiat looked to jumpstart manufacture of their useful monoplane fighter and this ultimately produced the G.55A and G.55B marks - the former was completed in a single-seat fighter / advanced trainer form with the latter was used as a two-seat trainer. Both Italy and Argentina took the renewed fighter into service and this demand eventually led to a shortage of available DB 605A inline engines. As orders for the G.55 were still outstanding, it was decided to re-engine the fighter with the British Rolls-Royce "Merlin" - the famous powerplant that drove the war-winning Spitfires and Mustangs for the Allies.
First-flight of a Merlin-engined (Merlin T.24-2 of 1,610 horsepower) G.55 (G.55BM) occurred in early 1948 and proved a healthy mating. The Italian Air Force liked what it saw and ordered their existing fleet of G.55 to be re-engined in the same fashion. Twelve G.55AM fighters were completed to the new "G.59" standard followed by sixteen single-seat "G.59-1A" and two-seat "G.59-1B" variants - introduced for service in 1950. Beyond the Italians, the Syrian Air Force took note and ordered thirty fighters which ended as new-build aircraft in the form of 26 x single-seat G.59-2A models (with 4 x 20mm cannon armament) and 4 xtwo-seat G.59-2Bs (2 x 12.7mm machine gun armament).
The G.59 line was completed with the introduction of the single-seat G.59-4A and the two-seat G.59-4B variants which installed bubble-style canopies for improved pilot vision. The A-model also featured a cut-down rear fuselage design. The Italian Air Force adopted twenty of the former and ten of the latter. The G.59-3A was proposed as a navigational trainer and did not proceed beyond a prototype.
The Argentine Air Force evaluated a single G.59-2A but this did not turn into a tangible production order.
As completed, the G.59 exhibited a maximum speed of 368 miles per hour and an operational range of 882 miles.
Any available statistics for the Fiat G.59 (Centauro) Fighter / Fighter-Trainer / Advanced Trainer Aircraft are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).
Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.
Relative Maximum Speed Rating
This entry's maximum listed speed (370mph).
Graph average of 300 miles-per-hour.
Graph showcases the Fiat G.59's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.