Aviation & Aerospace Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Small Arms Warships & Submarines Military Ranks U.S. Military Pay Special Forces DoD Dictionary (Alpha-to-Zulu) Military Alphabet Code

Aermacchi MB.339

Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft

Italy | 1978

"The Aermacchi MB.339 series replaced the Aermacchi MB.326 and Fiat G.91T trainers and light strike aircraft."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 07/29/2020 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
The Aermacchi MB.339 was the successor to the Aermacchi MB.326 in the advanced trainer and light strike role. This twin-seat trainer proved equally adept at its given roles and also went on to replace the aged Fiat G.91T trainer and close-support aircraft in service with the Italian Air Force. As with the MB.326, the newer MB.339 saw moderate export success around the globe with Australia, Argentina, Eritrea, Ghana, Italy, Malaysia, Nigeria, Peru and the UAE. After recording its first flight as a prototype (two completed as "MB.339X") on August 12th, 1976, the MB.339 was formally introduced in 1979 with production ongoing as of this writing (2012). At least 213 have been produced to date.

Compared to the MB.326 before it, the MB.339 featured an all-new redesigned nose assembly. The twin-seat arrangement was also modified to extend the view of the rear-seat instructor's/co-pilot's position while the single Piaggio (Rolls-Royce) Viper Mk 621 turbojet powerplant increased performance. Wingtip tanks were enlarged but were more or less retained from the earlier MB.326 models as were the 6 x external underwing hardpoints and 2 x DEFA 30mm internal cannons.

Overall design was highly conventional for an aircraft of this class. This included a short nose cone, low-set straight wing assemblies and a traditional single-fin rudder and applicable tailplanes. The undercarriage was of the three-wheeled tricycle arrangement, fully retractable. An in-flight refueling probe was offset to the right side of the cockpit to help extend the MB.339's operational range to an extent.

The MB.339A model series was the most numerous production model (107 examples across three production batches) while the "C" model added further improvements including an uprated engine, onboard laser rangefinder (in the nose) and provision for guided/homing missile firing. The "CD" model benefitted more with HOTAS (Hands on Throttle and Stick), HUDs (Head-Up Display) and three LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screens. The MB.339K and MB.339 T-Bird II were proposed variants - the former intended as a single-seat attack plane and the latter as a Lockheed proposal to the US JPATS competition.

The MB.339 has since proven an effective trainer and light strike aircraft. Eritrea has utilized its MB.339s in anger against neighboring Ethiopia in a February 1999 attack on an Ethiopian Army fuel depot at Adigrat.

Argentina, Malaysia, New Zealand and the UAE no longer operate their MB.339s.

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.
Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Aermacchi MB.339K Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft.
1 x Piaggio (Rolls-Royce) Viper 680-43 turbojet engine developing 4,450lb of thrust.
506 mph
815 kph | 440 kts
Max Speed
46,719 ft
14,240 m | 9 miles
Service Ceiling
231 miles
371 km | 200 nm
Operational Range
6,595 ft/min
2,010 m/min
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Aermacchi MB.339K Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft.
36.9 ft
11.24 m
O/A Length
36.8 ft
(11.22 m)
O/A Width
13.1 ft
(3.99 m)
O/A Height
6,889 lb
(3,125 kg)
Empty Weight
13,999 lb
(6,350 kg)
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Aermacchi MB.339 Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft .
2 x 30mm internal cannons

External hardpoints for mission-specific ordnance may include the following:

Conventional Drop Bombs
Unguided Rocket Pods
Cannon Pods
Matre anti-ship missiles
Magic air-to-air missiles
Sidewinder air-to-air missiles
Maverick air-to-ground missiles
Vinten Reconnaissance Pod
Notable series variants as part of the Aermacchi MB.339 family line.
MB.339A - Base Two-Seat Model
MB.339C - Improved MB.339 Light Attack Lead-In Functionality; advanced navigation and targeting capabilities; uprated powerplant; laser range finder in elongated nose cone; increased wing tip fuel tanks.
MB.339CD - Powered by the Viper 632; digital cockpit with three LCD displays; HUD and HOTAS controls.
MB.339CE - Eritrean Export Model based on the MB.339CD.
MB.339FD - Export Production Model fitted with Viper 680 powerplant with MB.339CD improvements.
MB.339K "Veltro 2" - Prototype Single-Seat Variant.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Aermacchi MB.339. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 213 Units

Contractor(s): Aermacchi - Italy
National flag of Argentina National flag of Australia National flag of Eritrea National flag of Italy National flag of Malaysia National flag of Nigeria National flag of Peru National flag of the United Arab Emirates

[ Australia; Argentina; Eritrea; Ghana; Italy; Malaysia; Nigeria; Peru; United Arab Emirates ]
1 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Low forward left side view of an Aermacchi MB.339 taking off
2 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Forward left front side view of an Aermacchi MB.339 at rest
3 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Rear left side view of an Aermacchi MB.339 readying for take-off
4 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Forward left side vire of an Aermacchi MB.339 at rest
5 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Top view of a flight of Aermacchi MB.339s
6 / 6
Image of the Aermacchi MB.339
Forward left side views of a flight of Aermacchi MB.339s coming in for a landing

Developments of similar form-and-function, or related, to the Aermacchi MB.339 Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft.
Going Further...
The Aermacchi MB.339 Advanced Trainer / Light Attack Aircraft appears in the following collections:
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2024 Military Pay Scale Military Ranks U.S. DoD Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols US 5-Star Generals WW2 Weapons by Country

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

Part of a network of sites that includes Global Firepower, WDMMA.org, WDMMW.org, and World War Next.

©2024 www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-2024 (21yrs)