Mitsubishi MC-21

The Mitsubishi MC-21 was a transport aircraft produced by converting surplus Ki-21-Ia bombers that had been withdrawn from front line service. It was an interim design pending the arrival of the Ki-57/ MC-20, a purpose-built transport aircraft based on the Ki-21.

The MC-21 was produced by removing all of the military equipment and armament from the Ki-21-Ia. At first the glazed nose and dorsal greenhouse were retained, but both were later removed and the gaps faired over. When this was done the MC-21 outperformed the original Ki-21-I and the purpose-built Ki-57-I.

Most of the MC-21s were operated by Dai Nippon Koku K.K. (Greater Japan Air Lines) as freight aircraft, carrying supplies between Japan and Manchuria, although it was possible to fit a primitive cabin capable of carrying nine passengers. A number of similar conversions were carried out in the field, where they were used as communications and hack aircraft.

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (12 February 2010), Mitsubishi MC-21,

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