A propaganda triumph when its
appearance was trumpeted by Mussolini's
Facist regime in 1936, the Breda
Ba.88 Lince (lynx) was a sleek all-metal
shoulder-wing monoplane. In April
1937 it established two world speedover-
distance records. Regarded as
an aeroplano di combattimento, suitable
for attack, long-range reconnaissance
or bombing operations, the Ba.88
then had its military equipment and
weapons installed. Immediately, performance
and flight characteristics fell
off dramatically, but by then production
orders were already being executed.
On 16 June 1940, just after Italy's declaration
of war on France and her
allies, the Ba.88 had its first taste of
action. Twelve aircraft from the Regia
Aeronautica's 19° Gruppo Autonomo
made bombing and machine-gun
attacks on the principal airfields of
Corsica; three days later nine Ba.88s
made a repeat attack, Analysis of these
operations showed that the Ba,88 had
only limited value, and any remaining
doubts were settled when Ba.88s of the
7° Gruppo Autonomo joined action in
Libya against the British. Fitted with
sand filters, the engines overheated
and failed to deliver their designed
power. Attacks on targets at Sidi Barram had to be aborted in September
1940, the aircraft failing to gain sufficient
altitude or maintain formation,
and reaching a speed less than half
that claimed by the manufacturers.
By mid-November 1940 most surviving
Ba.88s had been stripped of useful
equipment and were scattered around
operational airfields as decoys for
attacking British aircraft.
Three Ba.88s were modified by the
Agusta plant in 1942 to serve as
ground-attack aircraft. Wing span was
increased by 2.00m to
alleviate wing loading problems, their
engines were replaced by Fiat A.74s,
nose armament was increased to four
12.7mm machine-guns, and
dive brakes were installed. These Breda
Ba.88Ms were delivered to the 103°
Gruppo Autonomo Tuffatori (independent
dive-bombing group) at Lonate
Pozzolo on 7 September 1943. They
were flight-tested by Luftwaffe pilots,
but that was the last heard of the Breda
Ba.88 which represented, perhaps, the
most remarkable failure of any operational
aircraft to see service in World
FACTS AND FIGURES
© The Ba.88 could carry a
1000kg bomb load
and four machine guns, three
firing forward and a flexible
gun in the rear cockpit.
© The modern-looking Lince in fact
had a structure of steel tube with
a light metal outer skin. Most
contemporary light bombers were
of monocoque construction in
which the skin bore the load.
© The Ba.88M was the modified
version tested in 1943 with larger
wings, dive brakes and Fiat A.74
engines of 840hp.
© A window in the floor aided the
pilot in aiming the bombs. Most
other attack aircraft of this class
had a dedicated bomb-aimer.
© Bombs could be carried either in a
bomb bay or semi-externally in
recesses under the belly.
|A three-view drawing (886 x 492)|
|Klaatu83, e-mail, 22.01.2021 18:39|
Prior to World War II the Breda 88 was widely touted by the Italian Fascist Government as the fastest attack bomber in the world. However, it subsequently gained a reputation as possibly the worst combat aircraft of World War II. Although the prototype did set speed records, once the aircraft was fully equipped with bombs, guns, armor, fuel and other military equipment, its' performance became so poor that it proved incapable of carrying out its' intended missions. These supposedly formidable attack bombers proved to be so inadequate that they ended up being parked on Italian airfields as decoys for attacking enemy aircraft.
|Barry, 02.02.2016 16:01|
Span 51'2 Length 35'5" Height 10'2" Wing area 359 Sq ft
Empty Weight 10,250 lb Max Take off Weight 14.880 lb
Max speed 304 mph at 13,120 ft Service ceiling 26,000 ft
|Jessica Graham, e-mail, 23.06.2014 21:43|
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|Naga, 03.09.2011 20:41|
Unfortunatley these statistics could only be met in prototype form becuase test models lacked armament, desert modifications to the engines, a bomb bay, and accurate simulated weight for the demanded payload.
|Ben Beekman, e-mail, 29.01.2011 02:03|
According to David Mondey's book, "Axis Aircraft of World War II", the Breda Ba.88 Lince had some impressive performance statistics. Top speed is given as 304 mph, ceiling is 26,245 ft., range is 1,019 miles. This was using the later Piaggio P.XI, 1,000 hp engines at an empty weight of 10,251 lb. and loaded weight of 14,881 lb. Still later, these engines were replaced in three test planes by Fiat A.74's, the wingspan was increased and dive brakes were added for dive bombing. Luftwaffe pilots tested these three aircraft but nothing was ever heard from them. Apparently the manufacturer's performance statistics failed to be met when equipped for combat operations.
|a.casais, e-mail, 10.12.2010 14:29|
is a winged cow!!
|Fred, e-mail, 29.11.2009 18:00|
It Was a Miracle that it even flew ??
|ZR, 05.12.2008 02:27|
The fact section mistakenly states that the structure was a simple steel-tube framework covered with a light "shape" metal skin, actually that was an hybrid structure with stressed metal skin. The solution was one of the consequences of the very high (excessively)demanding 1936 Air Ministry specs, with respect to max speed (over 530km /h) and structural strength (12g ultimate loads). Those specs led to a very high plane weight and wingload, with all the inevitable negative effects on flight qualities with full wartime weapons and fuel loadings.
|redopz, e-mail, 01.10.2008 18:26|
wasnt it true that the Breda 88 couldnt get high enough to bank, so it had to be launched in the direction it was headed?
|3VI, e-mail, 20.10.2007 23:30|
It's funny to know that the first war flight of this plane had a tragicomic end. Immediately after the take off (with a small load of bombs) it was unable to climb and turn (!) due to the ridicolous power installed and high wing load. So the pilot was able to land only because the nearest airstrip was exactly disposed on the same line of the take-off airport!
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