North American NA-21 / XB-21


1st Flight 1936

Crew: Six to eight

Length: 61 ft 9 in (18.82 m)

Wingspan: 95 ft 0 in (28.96 m)

Height: 14 ft 9 in (4.50 m)

Wing area: 1,120 sq ft (104 m2)

Empty weight: 19,082 lb (8,655 kg)

Gross weight: 27,253 lb (12,362 kg)

Max takeoff weight: 40,000 lb (18,144 kg)

Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney R-2180-A Twin Hornet turbo supercharged radial engines, 1,200 hp (890 kW) each

Propellers: 3-bladed


Maximum speed: 220 mph (350 km/h, 190 kn) at 10,000 feet (3,000 m)

Cruise speed: 190 mph (310 km/h, 170 kn)

Range: 1,960 mi (3,150 km, 1,700 nmi) with 2,200 pounds (1,000 kg) of bombs

Combat range: 600 mi (970 km, 520 nmi) with 10,000 pounds (4,500 kg) of bombs

Service ceiling: 25,000 ft (7,600 m)

Time to altitude: 10 minutes to 10,000 feet (3,000 m)


Guns: Five .30-calibre machine guns, mounted in single turrets in the nose and dorsal positions, and single manually operated mounts in the waist and ventral positions.

Bombs: Up to 10,000 pounds (4,500 kg) in an internal bay.


The North American XB-21 (manufacturer’s model designation NA-21) and sometimes referred to by the name “Dragon”, was a prototype bomber aircraft developed by North American Aviation in the late 1930s, for evaluation by the United States Army Air Corps.

Evaluated against the Douglas B-18 Bolo, it was found to be considerably more expensive than the rival aircraft, and despite the ordering of a small number of evaluation aircraft, only the prototype was ever built.

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