The Curtis Company manufactured 13,700 P-40’s before and during World War II, with production ending on November 30, 1944. The P-40 flew with the air forces of the United States, the RAF, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, France, Brazil, China, Turkey, and Russia and by some resources Finland.
The P-40 lineage may be traced back to the radial engine-powered P-36 and H-75. The P-36 was intended to replace the P-26 Peashooter in an effort to match the high performance European fighters (the Bf-109, Spitfire and to an extent the MS-406). The Wright XR-1670 radial engine rated at 900 bhp powered the first prototype which first flew in April 1935. Soon it was evident that the radial engine-powered aircraft would be outclassed, and therefore the Air Corps requested that a fighter be equipped with the Allison V-1710 inline engine. Eventually the design morphed into the P-40C powered by the Allison V-1710-33 rated at 1040 bhp.