Air Weapons

Bloch

MB.210

Around one-third of the Armée de l'Air's medium bomber force at the start of World War II was composed of the Bloch MB.210. Based on the earlier MB.200, it was different mainly on account of its cantilever low-wing configuration and a retractable undercarriage but retained it's predecessor's pronounced angular fuselage which made it easily recognizable despite its ungainly appearance. Unfortunately for the French, the MB.210 was already obsolete by the time of the outbreak of the war but that did not prevent it from undertaking numerous nighttime operations against German lines of communication in the Rhineland, Belgium, and France itself before being retired shortly before the surrender. Pre-war export customers included Romania and Spain while a number of surviving aircraft were eventually sent to Bulgaria for navigation training.

The MB.210 was developed as a private venture and was first flown in prototype form on 23 November 1934. It had a fixed undercarriage which was eventually substituted by a retractable one in the second MB.211 Verdun prototype. Production versions were designated as the MB.210BN4 and BN5, these featured numerous modifications to the the wings, tail, and defensive armament while having a progressively improved powerplant.

Preceded by:

None

Succeeded by:

None

Datafile

DesignMB.210B5
TypeMedium Bomber
Year1936
Crew5
Dimensions
Length18.82 m
Height6.70 m
Wing Span22.81 m
Wing Area62.5 m²
Weight
Empty6,400 kg
Maximum10,200 kg
Wing Loading163.2 kg/m²
Performance
Speed322 km/h
Ceiling10,000 m
Range1,300-1,700 km
Powerplant
Engine2 x 14N 10/11
Gnome-Rhône
708 kW
Thrust/Weight0.27
Armament
Guns3 x 7.5-mm
Payload1,600 kg
Production
Built281
Total283