Gotha P.60 – A Superior Horten 229?
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Although Gotha was contracted to build the Ho 229 as a production aircraft, they preferred to build a design of their own as the Horten 229 has been plagued by teething problems, especially around the engines.
Maintenance of the engines was said to be a nightmare. Every time an engine had to be swapped out, the central section of the plane had to be fully dismantled to get to it. These issues lead to a significant reduction in the production of the 229.
A New Project
Gotha’s design team submitted a competing design of their own to the Air Ministry and the result was the P.60 project.
Not only did the design meet all the same requirements the Horten was expected to, but it can also be built using alternate materials and used the latest research from different wind tunnel tests. The P.60 also uses the same armament as the 229.
There were also other designs known as the P.60B and the P.60C. The P.60B was a slightly bigger and simplified version of the original P.60 also known as the P.60A. However, these projects were rejected in favor of the original P.60A.
Unlike other submissions, the P.60C was viewed more favorably, because of its capability to be a night-time bomber hunter. There were even proposals for an unarmed fast reconnaissance variant. However, the war in Europe ended before either of these designs left the drawing board.
Where’s The P.60 Today?
Yet, despite being a paper plane, you can find an example of the P.60 today – well, kind of. You can see a great replica that you can see on display in an aviation museum in Germany.