AIR01004A 1/72 North-American P-51D Mustang
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The Mustang was designed by North American to meet a British requirement for more fighters. It featured a revolutionary laminar flow wing which gave the plane great aerodynamic efficiency but the plane did not meet its full potential until fitted with the Rolls Royce Merlin engine. Due to its advanced aerodynamics it was found to have a great range and when fitted with the Merlin engine, it had the performance to match any fighter. As a result it became the USAAF's main fighter once available in numbers.
The early Merlin powered Mustangs the P-51B and C had a heavy framed canopy and a 'high back' rear fuselage. This did not give the best all round vision for the pilot and a new version was designed with a cut down rear fuselage and 'bubble canopy'. This became the most produced version, the P-51D. The P-51 was able to escort the US heavy bombers all the way to the furthest targets in Germany and back. It was because of this the Luftwaffe could no longer effectively defend Germany against bomber raids. Mustangs were also used to escort the B-29's over Japan in much the same way. After WW2 they saw use in the Korean War but they were relegated to the ground attack role as they were no match for the MiG-15 jet fighter.
This is Airfix's excellent recent tool P-51D Mustang kit with new decals. The kit is highly detailed with engraved panel lines and comes with markings for a plane from the famous 352nd FG (8th AF) 'Blue Nose'