03/31/2012. Designed by Alessandro Marchetti and flown for the first time on January 31, 1944 at Varese, the SM.93 was a fascinating aeroplane in several respects. Firstly, it was powered by a Daimler-Benz DB 605A 12-cylinder inverted liquid-cooled V-engine rated at 1,475 hp, which was installed beneath the pilot's cockpit; secondly, the pilot occupied a prone position with a gunner/observer occupying an orthodox aft-facing seat, and thirdly, it was entirely of wooden construction, which, unusual for combat aircraft at the time of the SM.93's debut, was unique among aircraft designed specifically for the dive bombing mission.
The SM.93 had a two-spar three-piece wooden wing with plywood and fabric skinning and a wooden monocoque fuselage. Armament consisted of a 0.787 in (20 mm) cannon with 150 rounds firing through the propeller hub, a 0.50 in (12.7 mm) machinegun with 350 rounds in each wing and a similar weapon on a flexible mounting in the rear cockpit. A bomb load of 1,808 lb (820 kg) was intended to be carried on the fuselage centerline. The prototype had made 16 flights totaling 6 hrs 40 min by March 29, 1944, during these diving speeds of the order of 559 mph (900 kmh) had been achieved, but on that date the German Control Commission ordered the termination of flight testing.
Additional photo (site files).