The Transall C-160 (sometimes C.160 or simply Transall) is a military transport aircraft. It was designed and produced as a joint venture between France and Germany, Transall being an abbreviation of the specially formed consortium Transporter Allianz, comprising the companies of MBB, Aerospatiale and Focke-Wulf. It was initially developed to meet the requirements for a modern cargo aircraft for the French and German Air Forces; export sales were also made to South Africa, Turkey, Thailand, and Jordan, as well as a small number to civilian operators.
The C-160 proved to be a long-lasting design, remaining in service more than 50 years after the type's first flight in 1963. It has provided logistical support to a number of overseas operations and deployments; and has also served in specialist roles such as an aerial refuelling tanker, airborne early warning, electronic intelligence and communications platform, and maritime patrol.
Variants[edit | edit source]
- C-160A: Six pre-production aircraft were built for Franco-German trials.
- C-160AEW: Airborne Early Warning variant.
- C-160ASF: An armed version of the C-160S for sea surveillance, fitted with a search radar, several observation blisters and launching tubes for smoke and other buoys. The C-160ASF also had a retractable radar under the fuselage and pylons for up to four AM 39 Exocet missiles or other munitions.
- C-160D: Production aircraft for the German Air Force; 110 were built. Twenty of these aircraft were delivered to Turkish Air Force in 1971 as C-160T. A few of the remaining German C-160 were fitted with the self-protection suite called ESS.
- C-160F: Production aircraft for the French Air Force; 50 were built.
- C-160J: Commercial airliner variant with the Rolls-Royce Tyne turboprops replaced by Pratt & Whitney Canada JT3-D turbofans.
- C-160P: Conversion of C-160Fs for use by the French Postal Service.
- C-160S: Maritime Surveillance variant of the C-160.
- C-160Z: Production aircraft for the South African Air Force; nine were built.