Fast facts

Type: Strategic heavy bomber.

Manufacturer: Consolidated Aircraft

Introduced: 1941.

Retired: 1945.

Number built: 18,482. Produced in greater numbers than any other American combat aircraft during World War II.

Cost per aircraft: $297,627.

Military mission: Besides bombing missions in the European, Pacific, African and Middle Eastern theaters of war, it was known for its versatility. It was used in the North Atlantic to destroy German submarines, closing the “Atlantic Gap” and allowing Britain’s convoys to survive.

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