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Restored P-63 Kingcobra to Appear With “Warbirds in Review” at AirVenture

June 8, 2017 - The group of rare warbirds at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017 continues to expand with the announcement that a Bell P-63 Kingcobra will appear at AirVenture this year.

The P-63 Kingcobra was produced between 1943 and 1945 and used primarily by the Soviet air force in World War II. Due to their overseas use and because only 3,300 of them were produced, a flying P-63 is a rare sight these days.

The Dixie Wing of the Commemorative Air Force is bringing its Kingcobra, which has a long and rich history of service in the United States. The P-63 served as a Bell test aircraft until January 1945, when it was transferred to NASA’s forerunner, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. Built in the winter of 1944, this P-63 was used for early flight testing by NACA at Moffett Field in 1945.

“We plan to unveil in Oshkosh the special markings the airplane carried in 1945 when based at Moffett Field,” said Mo Aguiari, marketing director for the Dixie Wing.

This Kingcobra spent 16 years in restoration before flying at Falcon Field in Georgia earlier this spring. In addition to its role as a test aircraft, at one point it was also used as an air show performer. It rolled out of the Bell plant in Niagara Falls, New York, on February 24, 1944. 

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