Macchi C.202 Folgore

Italy's Best Fighter of the Second World War

Davide F Jabes, Alessandro Romanello, Niccolo Tognarini

The Macchi C.202 was probably the most successful Italian fighter in WW2, the aircraft of almost all Italian top scoring aces. Mc.202 was fast and manoeuvrable, on par with, or better than the allied fighters of the same period. However, there were too few machines to exert a determinant role during the war due to inadequate planning and resources.
Date Published :
February 2022
Publisher :
Fonthill Media
Illustration :
52 b&w photos
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781781558300
Pages : 256
Dimensions : 9.75 X 6.75 inches
Stock Status : In stock


The Macchi C.202 was probably the most successful Italian fighter during the Second World War. It is generally agreed that the performance of the Macchi was superior to both the Hawker Hurricane and the Curtiss P-40 Kittyhawk and on a par with the Supermarine Spitfire Mk. V. It is not by chance that virtually all the Italian top scoring aces flew this plane either with the Regia Aeronautica or the Aeronautica Nazionale Repubblicana. At the same time, the Mc.202 is the symbol of the dysfunctions in the Italian military-industrial complex: the lack of sound industrial planning resulting in orders from the Regia Aeronautica for an exaggerated number of different aircraft; the lack of the development of adequate engines limiting aircraft performance and reducing capacity to house weapons with a proper punch; the corruption of politics and the culpable connivance of the high military spheres. The Mc.202 was therefore produced in limited numbers, while there is consensus that air war, especially in the African theater, would have been different had the aircraft been adopted before.

About The Author

Dr Davide F. Jabes received his PhD in History from The University of York (UK). He has worked as a consultant and researcher in Modern History for the University of Siena and several research Institutes as well as many publishing houses. Dr Niccolò Tognarini, has a PhD in History of International Relations from the European University Institute. He is presently working at the Council of the European Union as a curator, and regularly teaches at various international universities. Dr Alessandro Romanello graduated in Italian literature at the University of Bologna. He is a scholar of Italian literature and the history of the twentieth century, especially of the fascist regime. Since 2005 he is responsible for the modern book collections of the “Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei” in Rome.


List of abbreviations

1 Historical Context
2 The Schneider Trophy and Agello’s record
3 Mario Castoldi
4 The Macchi MC200 Saetta
5 The MC202 in combat, 1941-45. Construction and variants
6 The MC202 in combat, 1941-45. Training and organisation
7 The MC202 in combat, 1941-45. Combat



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" interesting examination of an under-sung fighter of WWII."

- Air Classics

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