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LOCKHEED P-38L LIGHTNING

The Lockheed P-38L Lightning was built between 1941 and 1945 and was used as an interceptor, a fighter bomber and a photo recce plane by the US Air Force during WW II. Because of its three-fuselage design and its enormous firepower it was nicknamed Fork-Tailed Devil by the pilots of the German Luftwaffe. Its main mission area was the Pacific Ocean, where it destroyed more Japanese planes than any other fighter plane. Some marginal detail: The French writer and pilot Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ("The Little Prince") died in a crash with a Lightning when conducting a recce flight from Corsica to Grenoble in 1944.

The Lightning that can be seen at AIRPOWER16 belongs to the Flying Bulls’ precious aircraft collection.The former American fighter plane, one of only five airworthy still existing worldwide, landed on Salzburg airport in March 2009. When it was bought, it was in a miserable condition, due to an emergency landing on a field caused by an engine fire. It was extensively restored, fitted with new engines and returned to its former glory before being brought over to Salzburg from the USA in 2009. Nowhere in the world is there a Lightning in better condition. The Flying Bulls' model is a rarity, especially in Europe, where it is the only airworthy example.

  • © Flyingbulls

  • © Flyingbulls

  • © Flyingbulls

  • © Flyingbulls

  • © Flyingbulls

© Flyingbulls

Facts & Figures

Manufacturer Lockheed, USA
Registration number N-25Y
Serial number AF44-53254
Wing span 15.8 m
Length 11.5 m
Height 3.9 m
Max. weight 7,950 kg
Max. speed 670 km/h
Cruising speed 450 km/h
Service ceiling 12,200 m
Power plant 2x Allison V1710-111/113
Power 2x 1,475 hp
Year of construction 1944
Display Flying