Pilatus P-3

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Pilatus P3-03 P3-Flyers HB-RBP OTT 2013 02.jpg
Role Trainer aircraft
Manufacturer Pilatus Aircraft
First flight 3 September 1953
Introduction 1956
Status in use in private hands
Primary users Swiss Air Force
Brazilian Navy
Number built 79
Developed into Pilatus PC-7
1959 Pilatus P3-05
A civil Pilatus P-3-05
Pilatus P-3-05

The Pilatus P-3 was a military training aircraft built by Pilatus Aircraft of Switzerland.

Design and development[edit]

The Pilatus P-3 was designed for primary and advanced training (including night flying, aerobatics and instrument flying). The military version was designated P-3-03. It was of all-metal construction with a retractable tricycle undercarriage and tandem seating. There was provision for underwing racks for light practice bombs or rockets and a machine gun in a pod below the port wing.

Operational history[edit]

The first prototype was built in 1953 and flew on 3 September, the same year.[1] The Swiss Air Force received 72 examples of this aircraft while the Brazilian Navy acquired six. The Swiss Air Force used the P-3 as a training aircraft until 1983, although it continued to be used as a liaison aircraft for another decade. In 1993–1995, 65 ex-Swiss Air Force aircraft were sold on the private market.[2]



The P-3 Flyers is an independent air display team based in Switzerland.[3][4] Formed in 1996. it currently operates five ex-Swiss Air Force P3 aircraft.[5][6]

Specifications (Pilatus P-3-03)[edit]

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1956–57[1]

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two
  • Length: 8.75 m (28 ft 8 in)
  • Wingspan: 10.40 m (34 ft 1 in)
  • Height: 3.05 m (10 ft 0 in)
  • Wing area: 16.55 m2 (178.1 sq ft)
  • Aspect ratio: 6.55:1
  • Empty weight: 1,090 kg (2,403 lb)
  • Gross weight: 1,500 kg (3,307 lb)
  • Fuel capacity: 170 litres (37 imp gal; 45 US gal)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming GO-435-C2-A2 six cylinder, air-cooled, four stroke, horizontally opposed aircraft engine, 180 kW (240 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 310 km/h (193 mph; 167 kn)
  • Cruise speed: 255 km/h (158 mph; 138 kn) (econ cruise)
  • Service ceiling: 5,500 m (18,000 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 7.00 m/s (1,378 ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 90.63 kg/m2 (18.56 lb/sq ft)
  • Power/mass: 0.12 kW/kg (0.072 hp/lb)

See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era



  1. ^ a b Bridgman 1956, p. 223.
  2. ^ " History: Pilatus P-3." Pilatus P-3 Retrieved: 9 November 2012.
  3. ^ The P-3 is a all-metal aircraft with tricycle landing gear, pilatus-enthusiasts.com.au (retrieved 25 January 2015)
  4. ^ Dai Pilatus P3 Trainers ai Pilatus P3 Flyers (pdf) (From Pilatus P3 trainers to Pilatus P3 flyers), retro.seals.ch (retrieved 25 January 2015)
  5. ^ Vola con il Pilatus dei P3 Flyers - Acrobazia aerea (Fly with the Pilatus P3 Flyers - Aerobatics), volarein.com (retrieved 25 January 2015)
  6. ^ P3 Flyers, Aeroclub Parma (retrieved 25 January 2015)


  • Bridgman, Leonard. Jane's All the World's Aircraft 1956-57. London: Jane's Ltd, 1956.
  • "History." Pilatus P-3 Owners Group.

External links[edit]