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Breguet Br.480 (series)

Four-Engined Heavy Strategic Bomber Prototype

France | 1947

"The Breguet Br.482 strategic heavy bomber initiative for post-war France produced just two prototypes."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Breguet Br.482 Four-Engined Heavy Strategic Bomber Prototype.
4 x Hispano-Suiza 12Z liquid-cooled V12 piston engines developing 1,350 horsepower and driving three-bladed propeller units.
348 mph
560 kph | 302 kts
Max Speed
39,370 ft
12,000 m | 7 miles
Service Ceiling
944 miles
1,520 km | 821 nm
Operational Range
750 ft/min
229 m/min
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Breguet Br.482 Four-Engined Heavy Strategic Bomber Prototype.
61.8 ft
18.85 m
O/A Length
79.1 ft
(24.10 m)
O/A Width
17.1 ft
(5.20 m)
O/A Height
23,149 lb
(10,500 kg)
Empty Weight
31,967 lb
(14,500 kg)
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Breguet Br.480 (series) Four-Engined Heavy Strategic Bomber Prototype .
Not Available.
Notable series variants as part of the Breguet Br.480 (series) family line.
Br.480 - Base Design Designation; powered by 2 x Gnome-Rhone 14L air-cooled radial piston engines.
Br.481 - Proposed version reengined with 2 x Hispano-Suiza 12Y types; smaller-area mainplanes.
Br.481 B4 - Br.481 production-quality designation.
Br.481 Raid - Proposed long-range, record-setting development; not built.
Br.482 B4 - Definitive Br.480 design with 4 x Hispano-Suiza 12Z engines.
Br.482 No.1 - First prototype; destroyed in German air raid in Algeria during 1942.
Br.482 No.2 - Second prototype; completed and flown in data-collecting/research/engine testbed role until September 1950.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 03/12/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

With the end of World War 2 (1939-1945), French aero-industry found itself with the daunting task of rebuilding. The French Air Force lacked what other powers of the day championed, namely a four-engined bomber of considerable range and war load to pound enemy infrastructure to infinity. At the end of the conflict, it was left with just two local options - the unfinished Heinkel He 274 (having been built on French soil at a French factory) and the Breguet Be.480/482, a pre-war four-engined "heavy" with roots in a late-1936 French Air Ministry requirement.


The requirement of December 1936 called for a medium-class, twin-engined bombing platform capable of reaching out to 1,600 miles (3,200 miles ferry) while carrying a war load near 2,200lb. Breguet went to work and unveiled its Br.480 prototype, a twin-engined type featuring a twin-finned tail, low-mounted monoplane wings, and a single engine to a wing. Heavy glazing was used at the nose section and the fuselage was given a deep appearance. Initially, the bomber was to be powered by 2 x Gnome Rhone 14L air-cooled radial piston engines of 1,225 horsepower (each) driving three-bladed propeller units.

From the Br.480 to the Br.481 and Br.482

In any event, the abandonment of this powerplant led to a revision of the bomber to use 2 x Hispano-Suiza 12Y series engines with smaller-area mainplanes. However, this proposed model, the "Br.481", was ultimately abandoned in favor of a four-engined configuration - the "Br.482" (also "Br.482 B4") - now powered by 4 x Hispano-Suiza 12Z engines of 1,350 horsepower each (production Br.481s were to carry the "Br.481 B4" designator; a planned long-ranged record-setting version was to become the "Br.481 Raid").

At least two prototypes were being worked on when the war turned against France's favor in May 1940. The German invasion of the country, and its ultimate conquering of France, derailed many-a-French aircraft project including the Br.480/Br.482. The same month of the invasion, the two prototypes were hastily flown away from the hotbed that was Paris - one (the second prototype) ended its flight in the southwest of France and the other (the first prototype) made the cross-Mediterranean journey to Algeria. The first prototype (Br.482 No.1) eventually fell victim to German aerial bombs in 1942 as the Allies advanced to ultimately take control of the North African Theater. The second (Br.482 No.2) manage to exist, amazingly under German noses, near occupied Biarritz outside Anglet, France (near the Spanish border).

In time, the Germans were forced back to German soil, leaving French aero-industry to breathe a sigh of relief and recommit to the work of rebuilding the depleted French Air Force. This meant that still-existing projects, which managed to survive the war like the Br. 482 did, received new leases on life. However, by the end of 1945, the French Air Force found itself with little need for a pre-war, prop-driven heavy bomber so the existing, now-complete, Br.482 was used as a research platform for the rest of its flying days - recording its first-flight on November 28th, 1947.

The Br.482's flying career went on to cover twenty total flights before the end, which came on September 13th, 1950. It was stripped of its usefulness and went on to be scrapped.

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Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Breguet Br.480 (series). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 2 Units

Contractor(s): Breguet Aviation - France
National flag of France

[ France (cancelled) ]
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Image of the Breguet Br.480 (series)
Image from the Public Domain.

Going Further...
The Breguet Br.480 (series) Four-Engined Heavy Strategic Bomber Prototype appears in the following collections:
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