The Curtiss H-75 was the export version of the American P-36 Hawk (Curtiss Model 75) fighter of the mid-1930s. The French took delivery of some 330 aircraft, designated the H-75A-1, A-2 and A-3, with the first planes entering service in the spring of 1939. They were modified for French Air Force usage and fitted with different equipment and armament.
The H-75 was a single-seat, all-metal low-wing monoplane with fabric-covered control surfaces. It had a retractable undercarriage with the main landing gear rotated 90° to fold flat into the wing. Powered by a Pratt & Whitney R-1830 Twin Wasp two-row radial engine, it was fitted with Curtiss Electric propeller. The H-75’s armament consisted of two machine guns in the nose, and another one (all H-75A-1s and 40 early H-75A-2s) or two guns in each wing (H-75A-3). A small bomb carrier was also mounted under each outer part of the wing.
The Curtiss H-75 was used most extensively by the French Armée de l’Air during the Battle of France and continued in service with the Vichy French after the Armistice.
A number of ex-French aircraft were seized by Germans, some of them were used by the Luftwaffe for pilot training and eventually many sold to Finland, which extensively used them against Soviet forces.
Colour schemes included in the kit:
1) Curtiss H-75A-2, No.125 (U025), White 8, 1st Escadrille, GC I/5, French Air Force (Armée de l’Air), Saint-Dizier airfield, France, June 1940
2) Curtiss H-75A-2, No.183 (U083), ‘Red & White Chequer’, SNCAC Factory Protection Flight (Patrouille DAT), French Air Force (Armée de l’Air), Bourges airfield, France, May 1940
Curtiss H-75A-2, No.183 (U083), ‘Red & White Chequer’, Vichy French Air Force (Armée de l’Air de Vichy), Oran-La-Sénia airfield, Algeria, North Africa, summer 1940
3) Curtiss H-75A-2, CU-580 (ex-French No.167), Yellow 0, 1/LeLv 32 (Fighter Sq.), Finnish Air Force (Ilmavoimat), Nurmoila airfield, Finland, autumn 1943
4) Curtiss H-75A-1, Jagdfliegerschule 1 (JFS 1) Fighter Training School, Luftwaffe, Werneuchen airfield, Germany, spring 1941