Ambrosini SAI.403

The Ambrosini SAI.403 Dardo ("Dart") was a light fighter aircraft built in Italy during World War II.

Ambrosini SAI.403
Class Aircraft
Type Fighter
Manufacturer SAI Ambrosini
Production Period 1943 - 1943
Origin Italy
Country Name Origin Year
Italy 1943
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
SAI Ambrosini 1943 1943 1 View

SAI.403 Dardo was a considerably refined version of the SAI.207, designed during the delays in that type's development. The improvements induced the Ministero dell' Aeronautica in 1943 to cancel its order for 2,000 of the SAI.207 so as to order 3,000 of the SAI.403 instead (800 from Ambrosini, 1,000 from Caproni, and 1,200 from Savoia-Marchetti). Apart from the fighter's superlative performance, its all-wood construction was attractive at a time when Italy was facing a shortage of strategic materials. However, by the time of the Armistice, the first of these was yet to leave the factory.

The single prototype (MM.518) was seized by the Germans and evaluated by the Luftwaffe at Vergiate. Japanese pilots then stationed in Germany were also given a chance to fly the aircraft, with the result that it was ordered into production by both Heinkel and Mitsubishi. None of these flew before the end of the war either.

Role Light fighter
Manufacturer Ambrosini
First flight 1943
Number built 1
Developed from Ambrosini SAI.207

General characteristics

  • Crew: one pilot
  • Length: 8.20 m (26 ft 11 in)
  • Wingspan: 9.00 m (32 ft 2 in)
  • Height: 2.9 m (9 ft 6 in)
  • Wing area: 14.5 m2 (156 ft2)
  • Empty weight: 1,985 kg (4,376 lb)
  • Gross weight: 2,643 kg (5,830 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Isotta-Fraschini Delta inverted V uprated, 750 kW (1000 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 648 km/h (400 mph)
  • Range: 936 km (584 miles)
  • Service ceiling: 10,000 m (32,800 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 15.9 m/s (3,120 ft/min)


  • 2× 12.7 mm Breda-SAFAT machine guns
  • 2× 15 mm MG 151/15 cannons or 2× 20 mm MG 151/20 guns

End notes