Lioré et Olivier LeO 45

The Lioré-et-Olivier LeO 45, first flight on 15 January 1937, was a French medium bomber used during World War II. It was a low-wing monoplane, all metal in construction, equipped with a retractable undercarriage and powered by two 1,100 hp Hispano-Suiza engines. The LeO 451 was conceived as a second-generation strategic bomber for the new French Air Force. In contrast to its predecessors which relied on machine guns for protection, the emphasis was placed on high-speed high-altitude cruise. The expectation was that high speed would force enemy fighters into tail-chase attacks and to that effect the aircraft was designed with a rear-firing cannon with an unobstructed rear arc of fire thanks to the twin rudders. It was a very effective bomber, but it appeared too late to give any substantial contribution to the war effort. Although designed before World War II, it remained in service until September 1957. Info: Wikipedia Profile: Wings Palette

Lioré et Olivier LeO 45
Roelf, May 24, 2011
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