The Vickers Viscount (Paperback)
The World's First Turboprop Airliner
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By some margin the most successful British medium-range airliner ever produced, the world-beating Viscount was a sublime combination of Vickers’ state-of-the-art post-war design and Rolls-Royce’s cutting-edge power-plant technology, both companies being at the very peak of their powers during the type’s genesis and evolution.
Tracing its origins back to the wartime Brabazon Committee, the Viscount was one of several designs from various British aircraft manufacturers produced to fulfill the committee’s specifications for a fast, economical short- to medium-range airliner to satisfy the demands of the burgeoning post-war civil aviation market, which was predicted to grow at a healthy rate over the following decades. Vickers’ chief designer and Managing Director George Edwards was quick to respond, the result being the Dart turboprop-powered Vickers V.630, which made its first flight in July 1948, despite its future looking uncertain after British European Airways having twenty examples of ordered its chief rival, Airspeed’s Ambassador, six months before. The Viscount nevertheless entered full service with BEA in 1953, much to the relief of its manufacturer, orders flooding in thereafter from numerous airlines — and air forces — all over the world. Ultimately, some 200 individual airlines, companies and organisations in more than eighty countries operated the dependable and, crucially, development-friendly Viscount over its long and distinguished career.
This book tells the full story of the world’s first turboprop airliner, from its Brabazon Committee beginnings, through its early flight trials programme and entry into service, to its almost unassailable position as the world’s number one medium-haul turboprop, including its astonishing breakthrough in the USA, where it single-handedly broke the big American manufacturers’ stranglehold on the airliner market. The type’s military career is also covered, as is its construction; also included in this volume are details of the numerous variants produced and those of the 444 built still surviving as exhibits today, along with twenty-four superb artworks by world-renowned aviation illustrator Juanita Franzi.
★★★★★ Concise & compact coverage of a classicAmazon Reviewer, R. H. Vandervord
For a concise, compact and affordable reference on the Viscount, this book comes highly recommended and sets a promising standard. It will be good to see additional titles as they are added - the Comet is next for the treatment.
Read the complete review online here.
★★★★★ Highly recommended for any Viscount fan...Amazon Reviewer, D Johnson
Five StarsAmazon review
Excellent for civil aviation fanAmazon review
I didn't want this book to end. I feel it could have been longer but it was an excellent account of the Vickers Viscount. I particularly enjoyed the chapter on the crash of the Viscount in Australia. I had not heard of this crash and think the inclusion of this account enhanced the book.
* * * * * FIRST CLASS - OUTSTANDINGAmazon review
Great book, excellent photos and artwork. It's always difficult to present stuff on something that's been around for many years so congrats to Nick Stroud for doing just that. It was certainly worth the wait. Although there's only 120 pages, this book is a gem - beautifully written, fine binding, with copious photographs and a set of truly superb artwork. Yes, there's quite a few books about the Viscount but this is, in my opinion, the very best. A real treasure.