Saab 17

The SAAB 17 was a Swedish bomber-reconnaissance aircraft.

Saab 17
Class Aircraft
Type Bomber
Manufacturer Saab Group
Production Period 1941 - 1944
Origin Sweden
Country Name Origin Year
Sweden 1940
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Austria View
Denmark View
Ethiopia 1942 1968 View
Finland View
Sweden 1942 1955 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Saab Group 1941 1944 323 View

The project first started at the end of the 1930s as the L 10 by ASJA, but after the merger with SAAB in 1937 it was renamed SAAB 17. The wings were reinforced to make it possible to use it as a dive bomber. Since there was a shortage of engines the planes were flown to the destination where the engine was removed and reused for the next delivery. The plane was also made in three versions with different engines. The B 17A used a Swedish built Pratt & Whitney Twin Wasp, the B 17B a British Bristol Mercury XXIV licence-built in Poland, and the B 17C an Italian Piaggio P.XI. The aircraft could be fitted with wheels, skis or floats. A unique feature of the Saab 17 was its use of the extended landing gear assembly, with its large covers, as dive brakes.

The first test flight was on 18 May 1940 and first deliveries to the Swedish Air Force (Flygvapnet) were in 1942. However, the development of jets meant it had a short service history. When the planes ended service in 1947-1950 46 of them were sold to Ethiopia where they were in service until 1968. Two B 17As were sold to Finland in 1959 and 1960, serving as target tugs in the Finnish Air Force. However, both were soon damaged and removed from service.

Role Bomber, reconnaissance
Manufacturer SAAB
First flight 18 May 1940
Introduction 1942
Retired 1955, Sweden
1968, Ethiopia
Status Retired
Primary users Swedish Air Force
Ethiopian Air Force
Finnish Air Force
Austrian Air Force
Produced 1941-1944
Number built 323

General characteristics

  • Crew: two
  • Length: 9.80 m (32 ft 2 in)
  • Wingspan: 13.70 m (44 ft 11 in)
  • Height: 4.00 m (13 ft 1 in)
  • Wing area: 28.5 m² (306 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 2,600 kg (5,720 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 3,970 kg (8,734 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S1C3G 14-cylinder radial engine, 882 kW (1,200 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 435 km/h (272 mph)
  • Range: 1,800 km (1,125 mi)
  • Service ceiling: 8,700 m (28,500 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 10 m/s (2,000 ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 139 kg/m² (28 lb/ft²)
  • Power/mass: 220 W/kg (0.14 hp/lb)


  • 2× 8 mm ksp m/22F machine guns, fixed forward
  • 1× 8 mm ksp m/22R flexible tail gun
  • 500 kg (1,100 lb) of bombs

End notes