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Brewster XA-32

Ground Attack / Dive Bomber Aircraft Prototype

Brewster XA-32

Ground Attack / Dive Bomber Aircraft Prototype

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The Brewster XA-32 series was intended as a ground attack aircraft though only two prototypes were ever completed.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United States
YEAR: 1943
MANUFACTURER(S): Brewster Aeronautical Corporation - USA
PRODUCTION: 2
OPERATORS: United States
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Brewster XA-32 model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 1
LENGTH: 40.49 feet (12.34 meters)
WIDTH: 44.88 feet (13.68 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 13,481 pounds (6,115 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-37 air-cooled radial piston engine developing 2,100 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 311 miles-per-hour (500 kilometers-per-hour; 270 knots)
RANGE: 500 miles (805 kilometers; 435 nautical miles)




ARMAMENT



XA-32:
8 x 12.7mm Browning heavy machine guns

XA-32A:
4 x 20mm cannons

OPTIONAL:
Up to 3,000lbs of internal (1,000lbs) and external (2,000lbs - underwing) stores.
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• XA-32 - Base Series Designation; fitted with 8 x 12.7mm machine guns.
• XA-32A - Second prototype fitted with 4 x 20mm cannons.


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the Brewster XA-32 Ground Attack / Dive Bomber Aircraft Prototype.  Entry last updated on 5/5/2016. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The United States Army Air Corps appreciated the tactical scope of the German Luftwaffe Junkers Ju 87 "Stuka" dive bombers and set about to stock a similar aircraft of its own. This charge was given to the Brewster Aeronautical Corporation in 1941. However, Brewster was slow in its response and a mockup was not made ready until the middle of 1942. A functioning prototype (XA-32) was therefore not in play until 1943 and this featured an all-new vertical tail fin design. By this time, America was fully committed to world war along several major fronts and piston-engined technology had advanced by a large margin.

The XA-32 was given a rather conventional design configuration though the implementation of an internal bomb bay generated a rather portly fuselage appearance. At its core, the XA-32 certainly appeared a serviceable mark, with well-rounded mid-set monoplane wings, a forward-set cockpit, front-mounted radial piston engine and conventional tail unit and undercarriage. Power was developed from a single Pratt & Whitney R-2800 series air-cooled radial piston engine driving a four-bladed propeller assembly. Primary armament was to be 8 x 0.50 Browning heavy machine guns. As a bomber, the XA-32 was given provision for 1,000lb bombs under each wing and a 1,000lb munition in the internal bomb bay.

During formal evaluation of the XA-32 in 1943, the aircraft came in underpowered and heavy. An attempt to improved performance was made by fitting of the Pratt & Whitney R-4360 "Wasp Major" air-cooled radial engine of 3,000 horsepower but this did little to circumvent inherently gross problems in the design. The initial prototype managed a cruising speed of less than 200 miles per hour and this was without its intended armament in place. Furthermore, ranges under a combat load were equally limited to just 500 miles - hardly acceptable as a military-minded mount that would be called to attack targets over long distances. A second prototype - the XA-32A - emerged and this was eventually fitted with 4 x 20mm cannons but even this form failed to improved upon the original in any way.

The forgettable XA-32 was officially cancelled in 1944 and the disastrous effort that was the XA-32 ultimately doomed the Brewster Aeronautical Corporation in full - becoming its last foray into aircraft design and development, the company dismantled on April 5th, 1946 after years of utterly terrible management. Its primary claim to fame would forever be the equally-portly "Brewster Buffalo" of the late 1930s/early 1940s which had beaten out the classic Grumman F4F Wildcat as the first US Navy monoplane carrier-borne fighter. The USAAC instead moved forward and procured the North American A-36A "Apache" series in number (500 examples) - a dedicated ground attack version of the famous P-51 Mustang - for its strike/dive bombing needs. This aircraft gave a good account of itself in limited, interim service before they, themselves, were replaced by improved ground-attack-minded P-51 and Republic P-47 Thunderbolt fighter-bombers.




MEDIA









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.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 400mph
Lo: 200mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (311mph).

    Graph average of 300 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LDN
LDN
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MSK
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  TKY
TKY
 
  SYD
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  LAX
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  NYC
Graph showcases the Brewster XA-32's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
2
2

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
In the Cockpit...