What is the most beautiful airplane ever made?

What is the most beautiful airplane ever made?

179 Responses

  1. Chuck

    I believe the most beautiful airplane is the XB-70. Only two were built and one crashed in testing. The other is on display at the Air Force Museum at Wright Patterson Airforce Base in Dayton, Ohio. I have a good friend who was in on the development of the XB-70.
    Chuck in Montana

    Reply
    • dave g.

      The admittedly death trap Gee Bee is maybe the sexiest and always gets my blood racing. The short lived Beech Starship also deserves an honorable mention, but the hands down prettiest civilian plane has got to be any later version of the LH Connie. Used to be one being restored at the downtown KC airport that I saw every time when I flew in on charters. Hope they found the funds to finish her off. Thing looked like it was in motion even though it was on the ground.

      On military its gotta be the late WWII P-51s but it just noses out the DH Mosquito for me.

      Reply
  2. daniel rugeroni

    Examples there are many, but, myself I always think about the Spitfire. It is a symbol and also a beutifull plane!

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  3. lew f.

    The B-29 Superfortress. Beautiful lines, powerful, brushed aluminum finish.

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  4. Bob Feathler

    I agree with Mike H., without question the most beautiful plane ever built was the North American P-51D Mustang.

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  5. daniel

    I agree with both Mike and Bob. Matter of fact, the Mustang was in my very short list, but I make my mind for the “Spit” because it has an aditional value as a symbol of Democracy (” so much owed by so many to so few” and in “this was their finest hour” using Sir Winston own words). Besides the P51 was a British project with a British engine. Both were magnificent planes in their own times. One further consideration: the brunt of the Battle of Great Britain was carried by the Hurricane.

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  6. daniel viola

    The 1st plane i thought of was the P51 and agree it is the best looking not to mention a god sent to those B17 crews being able to escort them on the complete missions.I have to give the F22 raptor a close second.

    Reply
    • Robert Hutchison

      I agree – the Connie, then the Super Connie was absolutely gorgeous!! Standing still on those stilt-like struts, it resembles a shapely beautiful woman !!

      Reply
    • Anne Arnold

      I agree totally! We flew these during the Vietnam War (USAF designation C121) until they were repalce in ’74 by the C 130 Hercules. They are a beautiful airplane and I was sorry to see them go!

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    • Kirk

      Gotta agree – I assumed that the majority of responses here would be the P-51, Spitfire and maybe the Mosquito – all great and beautiful warbirds, but the Constellation is a pure classic and was an icon of an era

      Reply
    • larry Allen

      I couldn’t agree more. The P-51 is the greatest and most beautiful warbird ever built, but the “Connie” is the most beautiful commercial plane ever built. Sorry I never got to fly on one.

      Reply
      • Milton

        couldn’t agree more…as a kid I ‘spotted’ planes at Ringway airport, Manchester, and occasionally we had a Super Connie arrive from the US, a staggering experience. The shape is beautiful and the noise was stupendous. Have a look at this if you haven’t seen it and download it in Full HD…it’ll blow you away……http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJvXCoWtq5k

    • Herbster

      The most beautiful civilian aircraft thet ever flew. I have fond memories of trips taken on “Connies.” Comfort, service, just a joy to be on these planes.

      The most beautiful military aircraft? No doubt, the SR71 Blackbird. The perfect marriage of function and beauty.

      Reply
  7. John

    Yes, all mentioned are great examples, but if talking great American muscle only the P-47 Thunderbolt can be mentioned. The “JUG”, rugged and a beautiful precurse of the American muscle car industry. Beautiful!

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  8. Brian Oswell

    The Mosquito comes out well ahead both in looks & in what it could do. Its uniqueness in being made from wood & its roles as Fighter, Bomber & Reconaissance.

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    • john holtz

      totally agree, beautiful and versitile fighter/bomber, hitler would have killed for it

      Reply
    • Brian

      Great plane, All around, bomber, fighter, reconisance. Could carry large payload, huge armament.

      Reply
  9. DALE

    daniel says that that the P-51 was a British project, Wrong! it was North American Aviation produced & developed! After the prototypes were flown it became obvious that the Briggs & Straton engine left a lot to be desired, & so the British insisted that it be fitted with a Rolls-Royce engine! SHAZAM !!! It was like magic! The two countries marriage of design & function paid off …! It was ,is, & shall ALWAYS be, one of the most successful fighters of ALL time ! Need proof? The same basic design is STILL being used & raced today, some 67+ yrs, later!

    Reply
    • Mark

      The British approached North American to build P 40’s under contract. North American replied that Curtiss can’t build enough P 40’s.North American suggested designing a new fighter, better than the P 40.
      It was designed at the request of the British. While the P 51 was in England for evaluation, test pilot Ronald Harker (British) suggested fitting the airframe with the Merlin engine. That engine was then built under license by Packard. It was a British project, built by North American.

      Reply
  10. Ben

    P-51 Not only for looks and utility but for the sound of the engines.

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  11. daniel

    I was surprised by Dale`answer. So I checked in the web and I found
    that on Wikipedia that …” The North American Aviation P-51 Mustang was an American long-range single-seat World War II fighter aircraft conceived, designed and built by North American Aviation (NAA) in response to a specification issued directly to NAA by the British Purchasing Commission”…, so I have not expresed mysdelf clearly, but I am still convinced that the P51 project had a strogn and initial british influence.

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  12. Fred

    everyone knows about the Spit and P51. you can go on and on about the Mosquito, the F190, but look at all the aircraft ever made and I have two favorites, the Curtiss P36, and the Republic R12 Rainbow. the P36 was a great design from the start, and save for it lacking good armament, it could have progressed into a better airplane with a Wright R2600 which was already being used on the B25 Mitchell. then it could have become equal the the P47, or P51. the R12, thought only a few were built, I beleive 2 at least. was a gorgious spaceaged airliner/ transport, that if the airlines would have recognized it at the time, could have been equal to or better than any DC aircraft and better looking than the Connie.

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  13. Roy

    Sorry guys, but the other-worldly look of the P-38 always appealed to me………. At the least, it was the most distinctive……..

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  14. Mike Lewis

    All of those planes are great and historically significant but for pure beauty the F-104 Starfighter outclasses them all.

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  15. Belknap

    I believe the most beautiful plane ever built was the Boeing B-47
    It has graceful and flowing lines. Truly a thing of beauty.
    Nothung can top it.

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  16. Locomotion

    No doubt it’s the Douglas C-47, no other plane comes close!

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  17. Straight-Leg

    If you were a “grunt” in the Persian Gulf War, in the Iraq War and/or in Afghanistan, the most beautiful aircraft in the world is the A-10 Warthog. Every ground-pounder loved that air[plane!

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  18. Theron

    By far the F4U Corsair is the most beautiful plane of WW 2.

    Reply
    • Steve Elkin

      I agree! Yea the P-51 was nice but the bent wing bird had more firepower and longer range.

      Reply
    • AlexC

      most definately the F4U corsair then the P51 mustang then the PBY Catalina

      Reply
    • Steve

      The F4U Corsair is the most beautiful plane ever built, of any time. Sorry, but I just love that plane.

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    • steve

      i agree the f4u was the best plane and the most feared looking…

      Reply
  19. Michael

    When one contemplates the sheer innovation, speed, and incredible unique design, I think the SR-71 Blackbird deserves some recognition; and to consider that it was designed and built in the 1950’s,

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    • Joe

      …And the SR-71 is the only jet that I know of that is arguably the finest looking bar in the world! Seriously, if you go to any catered event at the Smithsonian’s Air & Space Udvar-Haze Museum in Dulles, Virginia they typically set up a drink bar that surrounds the Blackbird! It is really a sight to behold!

      Reply
  20. Tom

    The 707 for sure. What was more beautiful than the “freedom bird”. I even rember the flight number, T244.

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  21. Pete

    civilian= Beech Staggerwing

    military= Messerschmitt Bf109 or B52D

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    • Robin

      Defineitely agree – of the biplanes, the Staggerwing without a doubt (though the Pitts Special comes close)

      But the Bf109???? As ‘beautiful’ as a Picasso painting!

      Reply
  22. Don

    Dehavilland Beaver. I have a photo of one landing on a lake in Alaska and I always want to be there when I look at it. The Dehavilland Vampire was one cool looking jet too.

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  23. Alejandro Contreras

    The most beautiful airplane ever made is Concorde, I think

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    • Linda

      I totally agree — the first time I saw the Concorde it brought tears to my eyes. Incredibly beautiful.

      Reply
      • Alejandro

        Is happy to know there are people with good taste in this world!

      • Bob

        I personally think the SST was a better and classier aircraft than the Concorde. Pity it was killed off by the environmentalists because of supposed pollution levels, leaving room for the Concorde to come in and take it’s place. Ah, politics, gotta just shake ya head.

    • Miguel

      Exactly!!! The Concorde is beauty if the shape of an aircraft. No other has ever come close to its elegance.

      Reply
  24. CS

    Grumman F9F for me. Second choice would be Martin P6M Seamaster.

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  25. John D

    C-47 or DC3 Beautiful Gooney Bird to fly in, just love the sound of thoes engines as they fly by. Here in New Zealand they even used them as long range Crop Dusters.

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    • Michael

      Aloha Alex,

      I agree with you, my response is #23; there is no other plane that has matched it’s sleekness, speed, and inovation. There are some good YouTube videos of the SR-71 in action.

      Michael

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    • Rob

      SR 71. She is a beutiful bird that is an engineering marval.

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    • Mike

      For me, the SR-71 is the best looking aircraft of them all, and I do appreciate so many different aircraft. The SR-71 is a thing of form, function and beauty that looks fast even when parked on display. Even though the SR-71 has its origins in the late 1950s, it still looks like something from the future.

      If you look at George Lucas’s Star Wars, Episode One, he created a mirrored, tailess version of the SR-71 as the primary spacecraft for Queen Amadala.

      Other favorites include the DC-3, Grumman Goose, F-4U Corsair, P-51 Mustang, B-36 Peacekeeper and the original Norththrop Flying Wing.

      Reply
    • Mike

      Never will there be an aircraft to come even close to the SR-71 . It was a masterpiece.

      Reply
  26. Harrison

    P-51 Mustang and the A-10 Warthog were/are things of beuty to the boots

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  27. John

    My vote goes to the RA5C Vigilante. Hell on avionics but still a beautiful airplane.

    Reply
    • Charlie White

      I’m thinking you must have been in a Heavy squadron. If so, what ship were you on?

      charlie

      Reply
      • GunnyP

        I agree with the Viggie. I was with VMFP-3 on the Midway. We flew the RF-4B. As much as I love the RF-4B’s, the Viggie is still an incrediblely beautiful bird. Having been a RSO I use to kid the Viggie RSO’s that they flew in their own coffins. If you know th RA5’s you know what I mean.

    • Larry

      I was on a tin can in the Atlantic and Med during the late sixties and we often got chosen for plane guard during flight ops. Even if you were below deck you could hear the howl from the air going into those big air scoops as a Vigilante came over to land on the carrier. It is a beautiful plane.

      Reply
    • Rod

      Most definitely one of the most beautiful, in both its A5A and RA5C incarnations.

      True enough, the A5 had a horrible reputation for unreliability, but this was the price you pay (unfortunately) for innovation. For a plane designed in the 50’s, there were a lot of new things: linear bomb bay, extensive use of titanium, full wing boundary layer control, spoiler/deflectors for roll axis control, all moving empennage, efficient ramp style intakes, all axis electronic flight controls, high pressure hydraulics, integrated inertial and radar nav system, coherent Ku band radar, HUD, rocket ejection seats, integrated electronic warfare suite, and I’m just getting started!

      Putting aside the reliability and maintenance issues, the A5 was clearly outstanding in both its flight and mission performance. This, combined with its esthetically pleasing clean design, obviously puts it at #1!

      Rod (ex- RAN, RVAH-12 for you heavies out there.)

      Reply
    • eddie

      Yes, The Vigilante was the most beautiful jet ever designed. For twin bladed aircraft hands down it is the De Haviland Mosquito!

      Reply
  28. Dan B

    Where have you people been? the spit and mustang are great, but the F-15 Eagle is much better!

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  29. Bill

    My vote is split between the F-4U Corsair and the P-38J Lightning.

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  30. Jeff

    The Wright Flyer. Beauty is also a function of simplicity and utility. It’s the first plane that worked.

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  31. Robin

    Beauty is relative, but the sublime beauty of the Spitfire is absolute. Force me to choose, then it’s the Mk VIII & Mk XIV.

    The most beautiful jet has to be the Hawker Hunter (any Mk) even moreso than the SR71 (which has majesty over beauty).

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    • Jeff

      I’d have to go for the F22Raptor when talking jets.

      Reply
      • Robin

        Awww! Whenever has such angularity been beautiful?! (Nice nose section though :)

  32. Tom

    First choice for me would have to be the Spitfire MkV. Second would be the Me 262. Hard to pick just one. Many WWII aircraft were objects of beauty.

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    • Robin

      Agreed! for beauty in the sky (where they can be admired best) the spitfire will always have it over the P51. Same engine but different *style*! Stylish elliptical wings vs squared lateral appendages, stylish rounded empannage vs square tail section (in all axes!).
      (Always had a problem with that pregnant belly radiator intake too).

      Reply
  33. GunnyP

    The A-5 Vigilante. The most beautiful carrier aircraft and therefore it is the most beautiful aircraft ever. The only other aircraft in the Viggies class is the RF-4B flown by VMFP-3, my old squadron.

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  34. Larry C

    It very much depends on perspective. I you were in a bomber in WWII the most beatiful sightto behold was a flight of P-51’s jioning you.

    If you were a grunt in a firefight in today’s middle eastern wars, a flight of A-10 Warthogs coming in is the most beatiful sight to see.

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    • Mike H.

      Or the Boeing 707, because that was your “freedom bird” out of Vietnam.

      Reply
  35. Hans Christian Hoff

    Civilian: de Havilland Comet IV
    Military: Avro Vulcan

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  36. Stegosaurus

    The F-4 Phantom II, no question. Why? Because that’s the aircraft I flew, of course!

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    • Guillermo Horruitiner

      Ja ja ja there´s no ugly son for his father !!! Nothing pretty but still lovely.

      Reply
  37. pearlmarie

    A helicopter might not be considered an airplane, strictly speaking, but the Huey (Bell UH-1 ?) was the sexiest thing going and saved a lot of lives as a medevac in its time.

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  38. Ken

    Corsair gets my vote. When at my elementary school desk, I drew pictures of it when I should have been paying attention to the 3 R’s. To her credit, my teacher allowed me to sketch WWI and WWII airplanes.

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  39. modelbuildingnut

    F4U Corsair.
    But its hard not to pick the P-38 or B-29.
    Most any warbird from WWII is special in my eyes.

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  40. Bob

    I can’t decide whether the f-4e is beautiful or ugly.

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  41. Jake 46

    Some great comments…however…one not mentioned..the Buff – B 52! Amazing airplane, great follow on to the B 47..the runnerup…at that time, the fastest aircraft in the USAF. B 52 for me!

    Reply
  42. John in Nevada

    No one has mentioned the F-16 fighting falcon so I will. I also like the B-26 Marauder but mainly because that was my dads plane in WW2.
    civilian plane I would go with the beech staggerwing.

    Reply
    • GunnyP

      F-16 was a lawn dart. B-26 was a crew killer. Stagger wing is a good choice

      Reply
      • TL Rouhier

        The B-26 had the lowest loss ratio of any bomber in WW II. After the wing was enlarged it was a “Hot ship.” My dad flew it because it was so hot.

  43. Andrew

    Civilian AN-2 Colt
    Military de havilland mosquito

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  44. Steve

    So many planes to choose from! So many emotions each may call to mind! OK here’s my effort:
    The warbirds:

    WWI… Folker DR1 triplanes in any flying circus livery.
    WWII… Supermarine Spitfire MK IX. Sorry Dad, even your highly polished P-51 is a close second.
    Post war… YB-49 flying wing
    Korea… F-86 also in brilliant aluminum
    Late 1950’s… Starfighter
    Viet Nam… F-4 Phantom (grew up in Florissant, MO)
    Cold war… F-16XL
    Gulf war… F-18
    Now… Raptor

    Civilians:
    1900… (yes that’s what I said) Wright Brothers’ glider
    1920’s… ( I think) Stearman
    1930’s… Howard Hughes’ H-1 record setter
    1940’s… Constellation
    1950’s… 707
    1960’s… X-15
    1970’s… Learjet
    1980’s… Concord
    1990’s… 747-400 in Air NZ livery
    2000’s… MD-11 in FedEx livery
    2010’s… Undecided

    Best Military… SR-71
    Best Civilian… MD80 in American Airlines livery
    Best in show… XB-70 Valkery
    Thanks for all your time!
    Steve

    Reply
    • Byrd

      I’m so glad you listed the Wright Flyer, specifically the glider, because their patent was based on the glider, on their system of control in the air in all three directions of pitch, roll and yaw. All the rest of aviation history is simply improvements (even Glen Curtiss’ ailerons and steering yoke) on their elegant idea. It was pure function and that makes it the most beautiful. Thanks.

      Reply
  45. Mike Main

    For me it’s always been the B-58 Hustler, but you have to see it without the weapons pod.

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  46. Larry

    There is no such thing as an ugly airplane. Whenever one goes over, whether it is a Cessna or a 747, I watch it. However, my choice for military fighters would be the F4U Corsair. Civilian would be the Aero Commander. The plane I have probably spent the most time in is the C130 Hercules.

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  47. Wild Bill

    Without a doubt… the SR-71, but the F-22 Raptor is a glory to behold.

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  48. Stan S

    Everyone always says the P51 mustang but the Stuka dive bomber is hardly mentioned when it was the scurge of the Polish invasion., unfortunately too short lived.

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  49. crazy300z

    Definately the Horton 229, only about 60 years ahead of its time. Stealth technology in the 1940’s?? WHAT!!!!!

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  50. Guillermo Horruitiner

    The Mustang P-51. It got all that a pilot would love to live. Even now a pilot would love to fly it. His design it´s still as pretty as it was 60 years ago. Noboby but you babe !

    Reply
  51. raymond

    it amazes me when someone mentioned the f-15 and even the f-15 as one of the most beautiful plane. and for goodness sake the f-18???! i can agree on the F-15 on some angles even the f-16 can look pretty in some angles. but the bug???!!! no aesthetic taste what so ever! the corsair and spitfires are very very pretty and the SR-71 probably will be voted as the most beautiful plane to ever take the sky. but for me the most attractive girl is the F-14 tomcat. even if the A was plagued by those stupid engines. After all there’s a reason why Tom Cruise became the popular actor that he is.

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  52. Mustapha

    I’d have to go with the P-38 Lightning but specifically the earlier models (through D). Cleanest lines on a prop-driven aircraft that you’re likely ever to see.

    Not a particular fan of jets, but if you force me to choose one I’ll go with the SR-71. Amazing plane to come out today, much less 50 years ago.

    Reply
    • Miguel Agreda

      I agreed!!, it’s streamlined and has a beutiful and agresive shark- look

      Reply
  53. Shawn

    Kawanishi HK6 “Mavis”.I have always liked flying boats.

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  54. william

    I really like the B-17G, but have to go with either the westland whirlwind mk1 fighter or the TA-152H

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  55. Bryan

    I like the F-14 Tomcat. Most versatile post WWII aircraft and one of the fastest!

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  56. Steve Wood

    I would have to say the B-52D, with full bomb compliment

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  57. Steve b

    The Boeing 747-400 , the force of the engine’s , the shape of the body , the bump on the head , just fantastic

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  58. Martin

    Concorde beyond a shadow of doubt. Not only is it unique, sleek elegant graceful and special, but it is an engineering marvel, a sysmbol of pride for those who built it and when she retired, many people cried, because never in the history of commercial aviation have we taken a step backwards, until Concorde retired.

    Second is the Mk IX Spitfire, sleek and elegant with a beautiful noise.

    The Avro Vulcan has to be on the list, what a noise that thing makes!

    Reply
    • CS

      FYI…..the Seamaster is my runner-up to the F9F in post #28. The Seamaster was too good to be allowed to survive in the Navy’s hands, so the Air Force had it killed.

      Reply
  59. Clyde S.

    Most beautiful? Three planes immediately come to my mind: the Boeing B-17 F and G models, the Douglas DC-3/C-47 and the Lockheed Constellation/Super Constellation. As an Air Force vet, 1966-1974, I have many favorites, but for sheer grace and beauty, whether soaring or on the hardstand, these three have no equals.

    Reply
    • Martin

      Beauty is subjective, I will always prefer Concorde and the Spitfire, but then, the DC-3, Constellation and B-17 are indeed wonderful aircraft! ;)

      Reply
  60. Jack T.

    Italian Macchi C 205, Japanese Ki – 61 “Tony” and the Mitsubichi G4M “Betty” all had sleek, beautifully designs. British Hawker Typhoon and Tempest were beauties as was the Corsair, the Mustang and the Lightning.

    Reply
  61. dacid.c

    There are so many lovely planes.

    Military – Spitfirer, Me262, Lancaster, Saab Viggen, Canberra bomber are a few of my favourites. any of the V Bomber as well., El

    Commercial – Super Constellation, Comet, DH Dragon Rapide

    Reply
  62. Harry Schoger

    I vote for the Spitfire Mk I, the Spitfire used most in the Battle of Britain. Had the Brits not won that battle the war would have likely come to America’s shore at some later time. For sheer beauty, though, I liked the Spitfire Mk IX better.

    My second pick is the Mustang P51-D. Third is the Vought F4U Corsair. Lastly, the Douglas SBD Dauntless, which destroyed more Japanese shipping in WWII than any other type aircraft.

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  63. Steve Merideth

    Blackbird singing in the dead of night…
    SR-71
    ‘Nuff Said!

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  64. Zachary

    I agree. Delta wing, all those engines, pod or no. It looks fast standing still.

    Reply
    • Alastair

      Even more beautiful was the Avro CF-105 Arrow. Perhaps the most advanced aircraft in the world at the time of its cancellation in 1958. A huge mistake on the part of the Canadian government

      Reply
  65. Bigfoot

    How can there be only ONE? There are so-o-o many, it’s easier to pick the duds. Sure the Spitfire and Mustang are at the pinical of the era and type. But look at the lines and abilities of the B1-B, or the 50’s \space age\ looks of the B-58 Hustler. The F9-F Panther had those classic lines, but of a different era. So many sizes, types and uses how can you pick just one? I sure can’t.

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  66. Kevin

    As to jets, the last true dogfighter the F86 is the coolest.

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  67. paul

    Love the P-51D, but one of the prettiest sights I saw was some Huey’s (I know they’re ‘copters) flying over us 42 years ago.

    Reply
  68. Scott

    Some great planes mentioned – for a dark horse candidate how about the Lockheed Electra 10 / 12? Beautiful + mysterious (Amelia’s last wheels up…)

    Reply
  69. Mike

    While i find almost all airplanes to be beautiful, I think Howard Hughes Spruce Goose is perhaps the most beautiful airplane.

    Reply
  70. Bud

    For me the F-4U Corsair, only because my late uncle flew them in the So. Pacific….But, like some are saying here. They all have their own beauty about them. After all they can do what we can only dream about. Fly.

    Reply
  71. JamesW.

    I’m with post #1, that other-worldly XB-70 is really something.

    As for piston engine planes, the DH Hornet & Republic Rainbow
    are real sleek, [but all were scrapped – shamefully]..

    & some of the Schneider Trophy sea-plane racers were both purposeful & pretty too..

    Reply
  72. Biggles

    I rekon the
    dh vampire, dh comet, dh moth minor and spit are awesome. Also like the vulcan. For ww1 probably nieuport 11.

    (sorry about the long list)

    Reply
  73. Iidredd

    Most beautiful plane(s): Concorde (looks like it doesn’t need an engines to fly!) the comet(one plane that actually looks like a bird) n thn it’s toss up between th SR71 an Vulcan both look evil and beautiful

    Reply
  74. Jim lindner

    No one has mentioned the Blohm and Voss BV141? Just kidding. But I have always admired the Westland Lysander.

    Reply
  75. Josh Work

    Id say its deffinately a tie between the B-17, the P-51, and the P-38

    Reply
  76. Doug

    I have to go with the first plane that held both the speed and altitude records simultaniously, the F-104 Starfighter. Most who saw it claimed it looked like it was going fast even when it was sitting on the ground. I love the sleek lines and futuristic looking shape.

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  77. Patrick

    The ones that I can walk away from after landing.

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    • Guillermo Horruitiner

      Those are the words of a true airman !!! The best thing of flying, is to return to land.

      Reply
  78. Barrie Rodliffe

    It has to be the Spitfire, the best fighter of WW II and one heck of a pretty plane to look at, it just looks right. It also still delights people at airshows, not bad when you consider how old the ones at airshows are.

    Reply
  79. Barrie Rodliffe

    The F 104 only held records because it was a one off special, the one in service was not so good.

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  80. Greg

    The F-23 Black Widow II
    So much better than the F-22.
    And visually stunning!

    Reply
  81. Tom Williamson

    This topic should be renamed the most beautiful American plane ever built.

    My Father was one fo the Americans that flew during the Battle of Britain. Till the day he died he eulogized about the Spitfire. I think outside of America most people agree.

    Reply
  82. James C.O'Leary

    Gentlemen – My vote goes to that technological \tour de force\,the Hughes H-1 racer.

    Reply
    • Alastair

      I agree completely. The CF-105 Arrow was not only beautiful but arguably the hottest fighter/interceptor of its day (1958) A pity it was cancelled.

      Reply
  83. Scottee

    Civil: Vickers VC-10 – pure elegance
    Military: Beriev BE-10 – pure evil

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  84. Skirmisher

    A good landing is one you can walk away from.
    A great landing is when you can use the plane again!

    Reply
  85. Keegan G

    There is a lot of different airplanes. To me I’m struggling between the p-61 black widow and the P51 B and D model. Both amazing looking aircraft.

    Reply
    • Keegan G

      Then again the B36 peacmaker is also stunning for some.

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  86. Barrie

    There are quite a few, the original DH Comet racer, the Spitfire which is not only very good looking it is also very nice to fly, the Fairey Delta II, The Avro Vulcan, the English Electric Lightning, The Concorde, The Panavia Tornado and the Eurofighter Typhoon There are many others, but I have only listed a few of the British aircraft to annoy the anti British contingent that keep flooding these pages with their biased opinions.

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  87. Mikewh

    The P-51 was an American design with some British influence. The British wanted P-40s yet Curtis could not produce enough aircraft to meet the British needs. So they went to North American to have them mass produce the P-40. Instead North American suggested the idea of creating an entirely new aircraft that will be even better than the P-40. They will also do it in 100 days. So they got to work. They adopted the idea of the Laminar air flow wing which decreased drag increasing speed and fuel economy. Once NAA had their sleek design they put the Allison V-8 engine in it. ( the same engine in the P-38 at the time). After an unsuccessful test flight they built an exact replica of the first plane and tried again. After they were satisfied, mass production began and shipped over to Britain and the plane was dubbed the A-36 Apache. After flying the A-36 the British realized they had an excellent airframe but lacking power. So they suggested to NAA wedding the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine to the airframe. After doing so the plane’s full potential was released. It was then renamed the P-51 Mustang.
    I got my info based on my own background knowledge and from the book, \History of the P-51\

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  88. Steven

    I agree! The ellipitical wings are very graceful and it reportedly flew like a dream with perfect handling and a natural feeling due to the automobile-like steering wheel with the firing button in the middle, like a horn. The Germans seem to have been very respectful of this plane.

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  89. Dave F

    I think the RA-5C Vigilante has always captured my imagination, sleek, futuristic as it was then. But of course, there was always Concorde..!!

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  90. Albert Dahlokia

    The question was “What is the most beautiful airplane ever made?”, not the fastest or most maneveurable or well-armed. From the standpoint of beauty and pure grace in motion, it’s clearly the 747.

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  91. Carlos Avila

    I think the Saab J-35 Draken is one of the most beautiful of all times

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  92. Gemini Jack

    As a kid, during WWll, I built many model airplanes. At one time I knew every airplane that flew in WWll & WWl. Occasionally, today, I roam through the toy departments of Walmart and see no sign of model airplanes or trains. Aviation has advanced much too fast…..only 66 years from Kittyhawk to the Moon.

    My favorite airplane, that I worked on in the USAF was the Douglas B-26. Also, the C-119 was an unique aircraft. The prettiest sight I ever saw was when I was in Taiwan in 1958 when a formation of 40 Chinese BiPlanes Yellow wings and Olive fuselages, peeled of and landed. I flew to & from the Philippines in the C-121.
    I also got a suggestion award for a design change on the 747 engine when I worked on the 1st 747 engine built at P&WA.

    Since the question is what is the \Prettiest\ airplane, the answer has to be the Red Baron’s Red & Black Fokker Triplane.

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  93. Gemini Jack

    I remember reading somewhere, Nazi fighter pilots were credited with two kills if they shot down a Mosquito bomber.

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  94. Tom Jones

    for elegant simple design the horton ho 229 surpasses all

    Reply

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