VARIG Airlines Constellation airplane model. Design of the Lockheed L-49 began in 1939 to meet the requirement of Pan American Airways and Transcontinental &, Western Air (now Trans World Airlines), for a 40-passenger airliner for use on domestic routes. Manufacture of the airplane was initiated, but with the outbreak of World War II aircraft on the production line were commandeered for service with the USAAF as transports under the designation C-69, the first being flown on January 9, 1943. The first Constellation was certified for civil operations on December 11, 1945, the aircraft entering service first with Pan Am and TWA, the latter inaugurating a regular US-Paris service on February 6, 1946. By the end of 1949 the demand for air travel was increasing and operators were then looking for airplanes of greater capacity. This brought development of the L-1049 Super Constellation, with the fuselage lengthened by 18 feet, 4 inches, and with 3,400-hp Wright 972TC-18DA-3 Turbo-Compound engines.
Mahogany Wood. Scale: 1/72. Wingspan 20 1/2 inches, Length 19 1/2 inches.