The Morane-Saulnier M.S. 406 was a French fighter aircraft developed and manufactured by Morane-Saulnier starting in 1938.> It was France's most manufactured fighters during the Second World War and one of only two French designs to exceed 1,000 in number. At the beginning of the war, it was one of only two French-built aircraft capable of 400 km/h (250 mph) – the other being the Potez 630.
The M.S. 406 was a low-wing monoplane of mixed construction, with fabric-covered wooden tail, with a bonded metal–wood material (Plymax) skin fixed to duralumin tubing. Plymax consisted of a thin sheet of duralumin bonded to a thicker sheet of plywood. Morane-Saulnier had a long history of producing warplanes dating back to the pre-First World War years but in the inter-war period, they had concentrated on civil designs. The aircraft was a departure for them, being their first low-wing monoplane, first with an enclosed cockpit and first with retracting landing gear.
It was powered by a Hispano-Suiza 12Y-31 engine, which provided 860 hp. It was armed with one 20mm Hispano-Suiza HS.404 cannon in the engine and two 7.5 mm MAC 1934 machine guns in the wings. The aircraft had a top speed of 420 km/h (260 mph) and a service ceiling of 30,000 ft (9,100 m).
The M.S. 406 entered service with the French Air Force in 1939. It was initially praised for its good handling and maneuverability. However, it quickly became apparent that the aircraft was underpowered and outgunned by its German opponents, particularly the Messerschmitt Bf 109E.
Despite its shortcomings, the M.S. 406 played a significant role in the Battle of France. French M.S. 406s claimed to have shot down over 400 German aircraft during the campaign. However, French losses were also high, with over 400 M.S. 406s being lost.
After the fall of France, the M.S. 406 continued to be used by the Vichy French Air Force and the Free French Air Force. It was also used by a number of other air forces, including those of Finland, Switzerland, and Bulgaria.
The Morane-Saulnier M.S. 406 KG200 was a variant of the M.S. 406 that was developed specifically for the Swiss Air Force. It was powered by a Hispano-Suiza 12Y-45 engine, which provided 935 hp. It was also equipped with a number of other modifications, including a new propeller, new landing gear, and a new armament system.
The M.S. 406 KG200 first flew in 1942 and entered service with the Swiss Air Force in 1943. It served with the Swiss Air Force until 1954.
Today, there are only a few Morane-Saulnier M.S. 406s still in existence. One of these is a M.S. 406 KG200, which is preserved at the Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne, Switzerland.
We show the Morane Saulnier in a German livery as following the occupation of France, manufacture continued under German supervision and the Germans used them particularly for training purposes. They also shipped a small quantity to Croatia. The type was also used by Finland, Switzerland and Turkey.
Our example shows one of the MS 406 in German Luftwaffe livery from 1943 It features the dark green and grey camouflaged upper body with mottled blue fuselage and yellow underbelly and tail. The tail also features the German Swastika in black. The markings along the fuselage and underside are also painted black with the German cross having a white outer edge. The retracted wheels are black with silver hubs. The exhaust is painted a rusty brown and the guns matt black.
Oxford Diecast Morane Saulnier 406 KG200 Ossuntarbes France 1943 - 1:72 Scale in flight mode. Comes boxed with a stand, this version has the Swastika. For the version without a Swastika check out this link AC116S