This page features the FIAT aircraft designed by ing. Giuseppe Gabrielli during the Regia Aeronautica years. Born in Sicily 1903 he had a long distinguished career that continued long after WWII. He died in 1987.
FIAT G.5. This aircraft was a fairly large 1930's single-engined low-wing monoplane built for touring and training purposes. Only a handful were built in various guises. Choroszy Modelbud do a nice 1/72 resin kit. Aerofan 80 features a useful article on this aircraft.
FIAT G.12. A tri-motor transport powered by FIAT A74 radials. It first flew in 1940 and a total of 104 were built. Originally designed for commercial airline use, most were used by the Regia Aeronautica for transport and as troop carriers. The sole kit of this aircraft was the Aerodim/SEM Model 1/72 resin model which is now discontinued.
FIAT G.212. A variant of the G.12 that was built built post-war with a larger fuselage and an increased wingspan. The first variant was the G.212CA that were powered by Alfa Romeo 128 radials. Two more Twin-Wasp engined variants were built, the G.212CP airliner and the G.212TP civil and military transport. The Italian Air Force converted 6 CP's into the G.212 AV (Aula Volante), effectively a flying classroom, of which there is a surviving example in the Italian Air Force Museum in Vigna di Valle. Broplan released two 1/72 vac-form G.212 kits, covering both military and civilian variants.
FIAT G-18. First flown in 1935, the first 3 G.18's had FIAT A.59 radials which were found to be underpowered. 6 more G.18's were built with the uprated FIAT A.80 engine. They were operated by the LATI airline on European routes and were all commandeered by the Regia Aeronautica for troop transport. Issue 87 of Aerofan has a major article on this aircraft. Italiankits have a 1/72 G.18 resin kit penned as a future release.
FIAT G.50 Freccia. Although Celestino Rostatelli was FIAT's 'go to' designer at the time, the air ministry decided to develop Gabrielli's G.50 concept, being Italy's first all-metal monoplane fighter with retractable undercarriage. The distinctive open cockpit was introduced after complaints about the enclosed Serie I canopy during service with the Aviazione Legionaria in Spain. Despite good handling, it suffered from a lack of firepower and performance and ultimately they were relegated to training duties with both the Regia Aeronautica and the Luftwaffe. The G.50 saw more success in the Finnish Airforce where they proved very effective against the Soviets during 1941, losing just three G.50's against 99 victories, 23 of which were claimed by ace pilot Oiva Tuominen. The FIAT G.50 has proved to be a very popular modelling subject probably due to its distinctive appearance.
AML released a dozen 1/72 boxings of the G.50, covering every variant except the G. 50V prototype. Their latest release (shared with FLY Models) is the best injection moulded kit to get in this scale. Only the SBS Models 1/72 resin kit is any better. Flying Machines trio of 1/48 G.50 kits are the ones to get in this scale but they are rather scarce. The 1/48 Secter/Hasegawa & Pacific Coast Models are discontinued as are the highly complex and wonderfully detailed 1/48 resin Italian Classic conversion & full kit sets. In 1/32 scale you may still be able to get your hands on the excellent Special hobby limited run kit.
FIAT G.55. This was an evolutionary development of the FIAT G.50 but with so many changes made to the airframe, it was given a new designation. Along with the Macchi C.202, Macchi C.205 & Reggiane RE.2005, it was more than a match for rival Allied fighters of the time. The G.55 had only just entered service with the Regia Aeronautica when the Armistice was signed, so it saw most action in the ANR. It was a very capable aircraft, especially at altitude thanks to its large wing area. At the end of hostilities there were sufficient airframes to continue production. A total of 75 more single and two-seat aircraft were built, with the bulk of them sent to Argentina.
In the past, this fine aircraft had been badly served by model kit companies with just the very basic 1/72 Supermodel & Frog/Revell kits and the poor 1/48 Smer kit to choose from. Most kits since then have been discontinued. This includes the 1/32 Pacific Coast Models kit, the 1/72 Misterkit resin kit, the 1/48 RCR resin kits and the 1/48 Classic Airframe kit. Fortunately Special Hobby and Flying Machines released a range of good quality 1/72 & 1/48 kits but they are getting scarce. This leaves Swords 1/72 kit which has been released as a double boxing.
FIAT G.56. Germany were hugely impressed with the FIAT G.55, so much so, they oversaw the development of 2 G.56 prototypes fitted with the more powerful DB.603 engine. It had an official top speed of 425mph but is known to have reached 430 to 440mph. It was not ordered into production even though it had demonstrated exceptional performance during testing. Special Hobby released a G.56 boxing of their 1/72 G.55 kit with additional resin parts. LF Models also released 1/48 and 1/72 resin kits.
FIAT G.59. With insufficient supplies of the D.Benz powerplant to continue post war production of the G.55 , the decision was made in 1948 to adapt the airframe to enable the installation of the Roll Royce Merlin engine. The resulting airframe was given the G.59 designation. A bubble canopy modification was also introduced during production. These two changes completely changed the orignal appearance of the G.55. Italiankits have released a variety of conversion sets for nearly all G.59 variants, mostly in 1/72 scale.
Model images are links to a build article