Lockheed PV-2 Harpoon
Lockheed Company's early success in WWII with their Hudson bomber (a
derivative of their Model 14 Super Electra used by the Royal Air Force) led
them to propose a specialized bomber and reconnaissance version of their
Model 18 Lodestar. Lockheed designated the new prototype the Model 37, and
after a brief trial period, the RAF ordered a total of 675 of them, calling
the new aircraft the Ventura. They were larger, heavier, carried a larger
bomb load, and had better armament than the Hudson, and entered RAF service
on 3 November 1942. Very quickly, the Ventura's limitations as a daylight
bomber became apparent, as a large number were lost to enemy fire. They were
turned over to RAF Coastal Command for domestic defense duties, and more
than half of the original order was cancelled.
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