2023-11-27 Sun Setting Over Parked P-51 Mustang Man-O-War Makes the Perfect Goodbye to Troubled 2022 - autoevolution

Sun Setting Over Parked P-51 Mustang Man-O-War Makes the Perfect Goodbye to Troubled 2022

Somehow we managed to reach the end this year as well. Perhaps not as emotionally charged as the previous ones, when the pandemic was in full swing, 2022 did bring with it a series of troubles, the biggest of them all being, of course, the war over in Ukraine.
P-51 Mustang Man-O-War 6 photos
Photo: USAF/Kyle Brasier
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As it usually happens every time a year ends, people are looking to the next one with renewed hope, and trying to find the best things that were in the one about to close. For our Photo of the Day section we do that as well, as we look back at some of the most amazing pics the U.S. Air Force snapped over the past few months.

And since it's almost Christmas, we’ll gift you this image of a P-51 Mustang parked under the setting sun. The photo was taken for the USAF back in October, at a time when the aircraft was preparing to take part in the 2022 Aerospace Valley Open House, Air Show and STEM Expo event at the Edwards Air Force Base in California.

And we’re not talking about any kind of P-51 Mustang, if there ever was such a thing, but about the famed Man-O-War, the aircraft being flown by Commemorative Air Force at shows across America and currently flying out of the Palm Springs Air Museum.

Tail number 414292, the plane is a P-51D version of the notorious North American Aviation World War II fighter-bomber, meaning the final variant to roll out the assembly lines.

Capable of carrying just the pilot, these war machines were powered by a Merlin 12-cylinder engine capable of developing 1,490 hp on a regular basis, but when going for a throttle setting called war emergency power (WEP), that peaked at 1,720 hp.

The maximum speed of the plane was 440 mph (710 kph) and it could keep in the air for as long as 1,650 miles (2,660 km) when equipped with external fuel tanks. The airplane could climb as high as 41,900 feet (12,800 meters).

Weapons-wise, the P-51D was equipped with six .50 caliber Browning machine guns, carrying a total of over 1,800 rounds of ammunition. Rockets (six or ten of them, depending on the variant) and bombs (a single one per run) were also included in the arsenal.

All of the above are numbers and specs that belong to the history books now. No Mustang in existence does combat duties anymore, but pretty much all of them are there to please the crowds.

The Man-O-War does so with a black, white, and red paint scheme, with its name inscribed on the nose and the USAF star aft. The plane will probably fly its share of air shows and racing missions in 2023 as well, but at the time of writing, we have no info on where you’ll be able to experience it first-hand.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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