Spartan Peter Van Loey

Leonardo C-27J Spartan

The Leonardo C-27J Spartan is essentially a heavily modernised and more powerful version of the Aeritalia G.222 which was known as the C-27A in the USA. Co-developed between Alenia Aermacchi (now part of Leonardo) and Lockheed Martin, this medium tactical transport aircraft features the same engines as the C-130J Hercules and a modern glass cockpit. Deliveries to the Italian Air Force began in 2006 following a first flight in 1999 and since then the C-27J has been delivered to over 15 other nations including Australia and the USA.

Italy was the launch customer for the C-27J and currently operate a fleet of 12 aircraft, this includes a specialised version which can be equipped with intelligence gathering systems, when necessary, known as the Praetorian. Since being introduced into service, the C-27J has undertaken extensive combat deployments to Afghanistan and also humanitarian missions in the Philippines. The C-27J in Italian pilot hands is a popular airshow participant by amazing spectators with a looping and rolling cargo aircraft.

We are pleased to announce that the Italian Air Force are providing their popular C-27J solo display for this year's Air Tattoo. Flown by test pilots from the 311° Gruppo Volo known as the Reparto Sperimentale Volo (Experimental Flight Unit). In addition, a second aircraft will be appearing on static display from the 46ª Brigata Aerea based close to Pisa. Both aircraft will be displaying as part of our celebration of the centenary of the Italian Air Force.

Photo Credit: Peter Van Loey

On display