Italy's oldest and, at one time, largest aircraft manufacturer,
the Caproni group comprised more than 20 companies,
of which the principal aircraft building members
were Aeroplani Caproni Trento, Caproni Aeronautica Bergamasca,
Caproni Vizzola SpA, Compagnia Nazionale
Aeronautica, Aeronautica Predappio SpA, and Officine
Meccaniche Reggiane SpA. The Isotta-Fraschini aero-
engine company was also part of the group.
Company's founder, Count Gianni Caproni di Taliedo, eight-engined 'triple-triplane' of 1921, intended to
built and flew his first aircraft in May 1910, thereafter 100 passengers. After formation of Regia Aeronautica in
associating with various partners until First World War. 1923 Caproni achieved success with such military aircraft
Achieved an international reputation with the Ca 1 -Ca 5 as the Ca 36, Ca 73 and Ca 74. The following decade pro-
series of large tri-motor biplane and triplane bombers, duced the Ca 101, Ca 111, and Ca 133 range of
built by a company called Societa per lo Sviluppo del-"Colonial"
aircraft and a series of multipurpose recon-
I'Aviazione in Italia, with factories at Taliedo and Vizzola. naissance/light bomber/transport types, production of which was shared with the Bergamasca subsidiary.
Early post-war publicity gained by Ca 60, an enormous which was shared with the Bergamasca subsidiary.
Cantieri Aeronautici Bergamaschi had been
absorbed by Caproni in 1931. Initially built Ca 100 and Ca
101, then built the new aircraft to the designs of Ing Cesare
Pallavicino. Major production types during 1934-1944
were A.P.1 single-seat fighter, followed by the family of
twin-engined aircraft: Ca 309 Ghibli;
Ca310/310 bis Libeccio; Ca 311 Libeccio; Ca 312 bis
Libeccio; Ca 314, and 316.
More than 2,500 examples of the Ca 100 training/touring
biplane were built during the 1930s; the Ca 161 bis,
a single-seat single-engined biplane, set an international
altitude record of 17,083m that remains
unbeaten today in its class. The Caproni-Campini CC-1 of
1940 was Italy's first and the world's second aircraft to
fly by jet propulsion, though it was not powered by a turbine.
During the Second World War
the company was
chiefly concerned with the production and development
of the Ca 310-Ca 314 multipurpose twin-engined aircraft
and with the Reggiane Re. 2000-Re 2005 series of single-
seat fighters. During the lifetime of the group some 180
different types were built, in addition to licensed construction
of almost as many by other designers.
The parent company went bankrupt in 1950. Aeroplani
Caproni Trento survived the bankruptcy and in May 1952
flew Italy's first postwar jet light aircraft, the F.5, designed
by Dott Ing Stelio Frati.
Caproni Vizzola Costruzioni
Aeronautiche SpA was formerly
the Scuola Aviazione Caproni, the oldest flying school
in Italy, and became the last surviving part of the company
until bought by Agusta in 1983, producing the Calif series
of sailplanes and finally the C22J Ventura two-seat very
light basic trainer with two Microturbo turbojet engines,
first flown 1980. Earlier it remodeled the Ca 133 for ambulance
and military transport duties and assisted in production
of the Breda Ba 65. Its first original design had
been the F.4 single-seat fighter designed by Ing F Fabrizi,
flown in 1940. Prototype F.6 had more powerful engine.