No. 5977. Fiat C.R.32 (974) Spanish Air Force
Photographed at Matacan Airforce Base, Salamanca, Spain, ca. 1940, by Julian Hoyos

Fiat C.R.32

11/15/2014. Remarks by Johan Visschedijk: "One of the most outstanding single-seat fighters of the early 1930s, the C.R.32 was essentially a scaled-down derivative of the C.R.30, possessing a similar fabric-covered light alloy and steel structure and Fiat A 30 RA engine. First flown on April 28, 1933, the C.R.32 carried an armament of two 0.303 in (7.7 mm) or 0.50 in (12.7 mm) machineguns, and the initial production series of 24 aircraft was ordered by China, although, in the event, only nine were delivered (in the spring of 1935). Between March 1934 and February 1936, 282 C.R.32s were delivered to the Regia Aeronautica, and this fighter first saw active service in the Spanish Civil War with the Aviacion del Tercio in August 1936.

Production of 283 examples of the C.R.32bis followed for the Regia Aeronautica, this having the improved 600 hp A 30 RAbis engine, an armament of two 0.303 in (7.7 mm) and two 0.50 in (12.7 mm) machineguns, and more minor changes. Forty-five similar fighters were supplied to Austria and 52 to Hungary (the latter eventually receiving 38 of those originally purchased by the former). The C.R.32ter, of which 150 were produced for the Regia Aeronautica in July-December 1937, reverted to the twin 0.50 in (12.7 mm) machineguns armament, and featured improved gunsight and instrumentation. The definitive model for the Italian air arm was the similarly-armed C.R.32quater, of which 337 were delivered to the Regia Aeronautica, similar aircraft being purchased by Paraguay and Venezuela, which received five and nine respectively.

A total of 377 C.R.32s fought with Italian and Spanish units over Spain, and 100 C.R.32quater fighters were license-built in Spain by Hispano-Suiza during 1940-1943, forty of these subsequently being converted as two-seaters. Production of the C.R.32 totaled 1,211 aircraft. The following data relate to the C.R.32ter.

Created November 30, 2006