ESCI 1/48 Atlas Impala Mk.1
The Aermacchi MB-326 was a low-wing monoplane with an all-metal structure composed of light alloys. As originally developed, the MB-326 functioned as a refined but simple aircraft capable of covering the considerably wide range of performance characteristics required on both ab initio training and advanced instruction alike.
The MB-326 was powered by a single Rolls-Royce Viper non-afterburning turbojet engine, which possessed multiple favorable attributes in par with the MB-326's philosophy of simplicity and robustness, with a somewhat forgiving nature to mishandling in the air by students.
The MB-326 was outfitted with a tandem cockpit configuration, this arrangement had been chosen to result in a slimmer and more aerodynamically efficient fuselage in comparison to the then more usual side-by-side arrangement.
Though originally conceived as a two-seat trainer, there have also been single and two-seat light attack versions produced. It is one of the most commercially successful aircraft of its type, being bought by more than 10 countries and produced under license in Australia, Brazil and South Africa.
South Africa obtained a license to produce the Aermacchi MB-326M, as the Impala Mk I in 1964 with production starting in 1966. It received a number (40 or 16, with sources varying) Italian-built aircraft followed by about 125 (135) built locally by the Atlas Aircraft Corporation.
In the latter configuration, the aircraft had many advantages over more expensive fast-jets. Although slower, it could operate from primitive, short airfields and strike within minutes.
This is the venerable ESCI kit of the classic trainer, accompanying us from 1981.
The build was an entry to Michael Paquette' s Serving Under Another Flag GB. Thanks All who followed my thread!
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