|TRANSPORT||Virtual Aircraft Museum / Italy / Piaggio|
An entirely new design, bearing little resemblance to the original P.23, the Piaggio P.23R of 1936 had a pencil-shaped fuselage, a cantilever low-set wing with straight taper, and was powered by three 671kW Isotta Fraschini Asso XI R V-12 engines in sleek cowlings. Intended purely as a record-breaker, the P.23R had a crew of two seated side-by-side in individual cockpits, each with its own windscreen. Later modified by the installation of three 746kW Piaggio P.XI RC.40 radials, and with an enclosed canopy over each cockpit and revised main landing gear, the P.23R was used on 30 December 1938 to establish new world records, carrying a payload of 5000kg over distances of 1000km and 2000km at an average speed of 404km/h. Although the P.23R appeared in Allied wartime recognition manuals as a potential bomber, development of the type had already been abandoned in 1939.