North American P-51 Mustang

fighter aircraft family by North American Aviation

The P-51 Mustang was an American fighter made by North American Aviation during World War II. Later versions escorted American bombers over Europe and Japan. There were 5 versions of the Mustang built, called the P-51A, P-51B, P-51C, P-51D, and the P-51H. To provide more power at high altitude, the B, C, D, and H versions had a Packard-built version of the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine instead of the Allison engine used in the P-51A. The Packard Merlin engine featured a more advanced supercharger, allowing much better performance above 15,000 feet when compared to the Allison. The P-51D version had a "bubble" canopy, or one unobstructed by metal supports. After World War II, it was used in the Korean War as a dive bomber and was used by many Central American air forces until the 1970s. Today, P-51 Mustangs are often used in air races.

P-51 Mustang
375th Fighter Squadron North American P-51D-5-NA Mustang 44-13926.jpg
P-51D of 375th Fighter Squadron, with underwing drop tanks.
Role Fighter
National origin United States
Manufacturer North American Aviation
First flight 26 October 1940
Introduction January 1942 (RAF)[1]
Status Retired from military service 1984 (Dominican Air Force)[2]
Primary users United States Army Air Forces
Royal Air Force
Chinese Nationalist Air Force
numerous others (see below)
Number built More than 15,000[3]
Unit cost
US$50,985 in 1945
Variants North American A-36 Apache
Rolls-Royce Mustang Mk.X
Cavalier Mustang
Developed into North American F-82 Twin Mustang
Piper PA-48 Enforcer


  1. "Mustang Aces of the Ninth & Fifteenth Air Forces & the RAF".
  2. Hickman. Kennedy. "World War II: North American P-51 Mustang". Archived 1 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved: 19 June 2014
  3. "North American P-51D Mustang" Archived 22 November 2016 at the Wayback Machine. National Museum of the United States Air Force, 2 April 2011. Retrieved: 22 October 2016.

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