No. 994. Aermacchi AL.60BC-5 Conestoga (CF-XED-X c/n 6247)
Photographed at Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada, August 1968, by Ron Dupas

Aermacchi AL.60BC-5 Conestoga

06/30/2012. In those two additional site files photos 1, 2, the above
AL.60BC-5 CF-XED is seen with three AL.60C-5s, being assembled in Canada and are showing the registrations CF-XKU, CF-XKV and CF-XKW (although the latter two were not taken up). These three aircraft also returned to Italy and were registered I-MANH, I-MANI and I-MANJ. Subsequently they were among the seven AL.60C-5s that were sold to the Central African Republic (alike the AL60BC-5) and reregistered as TL-K-AAO, TL-K-AAQ and TL-K-AAM respectively.

03/31/2010. The first aircraft to originate from the Lockheed-Georgia Company was a single-engined light all-metal six-seat cabin utility transport, with high wing and a fixed nose-wheel undercarriage. Under the Lockheed design designation CL-402, the Mooney brothers designed an aircraft to meet a specification prepared by General Juan Azcarate of Mexico, this simple machine was generally in the same class as the mass-produced Cessna 180 and 185 and its design was undertaken in January 1959 with a view to attracting a share of this lucrative market.

However, as the overheads of a company of the size of Lockheed would excessively burden such a small and relatively low-priced aircraft, it was decided that after the production and testing of two prototypes, quantity manufacture would be undertaken by licensees in countries combining a good potential market with low labor costs. Already, before initiating the design of this six-passenger aircraft, Lockheed had conducted market studies which led it to invest in two foreign companies specially organized to produce this aircraft.

In Mexico, the associated company was Lockheed-Azcarate S.A. in San Luis Potosi, while in Santa Isabel, Córdoba, Argentina it was Aviones Lockheed-Kaiser Argentina; but the Argentine venture, for which a new factory was to have been built, did not come to fruition. The Mexican organization, on the other hand, was more successful, and its acronym LASA, together with the last two digits of the year in which aircraft certification was obtained, supplied the LASA-60 designation to the utility transport from Georgia.

To obtain good field performance at higher elevations, the LASA-60s were fitted with high-lift Fowler flaps and were powered by either a 250 hp Continental IO-470R (first prototype, designation CL-402-2, registered N601L) or 260 hp turbo-supercharged TSIO-470B (second prototype, designation
CL-402-1, registered N602L) six-cylinder engine driving a two-blade propeller. The first aircraft was flown at Marietta on September 15, 1959. It was followed shortly after by the second prototype, which was delivered as a pattern aircraft to Lockheed-Azcarate with the registration XB-GUZ.

The Mexican company reportedly produced 44 LASA-60s and the first was flown on March 21, 1961. Some were powered by the IO-470R engine
(CL-402-2 version), but the majority were powered by the TSIO-470B engine (CL-402-1 version). Eighteen LASA-60s served at Cozumel with the 201 Escadrilla Aerea of the Fuerza Aerea Mexicana.

Lockheed also sold the license rights to Aeronautica Macchi, with this Italian firm flying the first of its AL.60B-1s on April 19, 1961, registered as I-MACO (c/n 6143). Aermacchi (as the company became known around that time) had better success with the type in all producing 99 AL.60s and a single static test frame, while an additional five airframes were not completed when production ended in 1972:

AL.60B-1 Santa Maria. With 250 hp Continental IO-470R engine, 4 built.

AL.60B-2 Santa Maria. Similar to AL.60B-1, with 260 hp Continental
TSIO-470B engine, 71 built.

AL.60D-3 Santa Maria. Similar to AL.60B-2, with 340 hp Lycoming GSO-480-B1 engine, prototype I-RAIB flew early 1963, 1 built.

AL.60C-4 Trojan. New version with 340 hp Lycoming GSO-480-B1 engine, tail wheel undercarriage, separate pilot's door, enlarged vertical tail. Prototype I-MACP (c/n 6231) flew early 1963, went to the Italian AF with s/n MM581,
1 built.

AL.60C-5 Conestoga. Similar to AL.60C-4 with further airframe strengthening and 400 hp Lycoming IO-720-A1A engine, 8 built.

AL.60BC-5 Conestoga. Similar to AL.60C-5, adapted for Canadian bush plane market, 1 built (pictured). After the aircraft was demonstrated in Canada, it returned to Italy, registered as I-MANB. Later it was sold to the Central African Republic (together with 7 AL.60C-5s) and registered as

AL.60F-5 Conestoga. Similar to AL.60C-5, but with nose-wheel undercarriage, first example was I-MABD (c/n 6271), 13 built.

Created November 15, 2001