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The  Lockheed L-18 Lodestar was the first aircraft exclusively destined for the transportation of the Brazilian President. Its acquisition was made late in 1941, through the US Army and specially configured to serve President Vargas. This presidential aircraft was designated VC-66. Upon the delivery of the first plane some other L-18 with small variations were received for use in the newly created Brazilian Air Force.  

Presidential Lodestar carried 11 passengers in a spacious cabin and powered by two Wright R-1820-87 engines. In 1950 one Lodestar carrying the former Air Ministry Salgado Filho for a meeting with ex President Vargas in his farm at São Borja, state of Rio Grande do Sul, crashed against a hill in São Francisco de Assis, with the loss of all passengers. Brazilian Air Force FAB, received a total of 9 Lodestar during the war designated as C-60.    

General characteristics:

Crew: 3   

Capacity: 14 passengers  

Length: 49 ft 10 in (15.2 m)   

Wingspan: 65 ft 6 in (20 m)   

Height: 11 ft 10 in (3.6 m)   

Wing area: 551 ft² (51.2 m²) 

Empty weight: 12,000 lb (5,440 kg) 

Loaded weight: 17,500 lb (7,940 kg) 

Powerplant: 2× Pratt & Whitney Hornet S1C3-G, 1,050 hp (780 kW) each.    

Performance Maximum speed: 265 mph (426 km/h) at 13,300 ft (4,050 m)   

Range: 1,700 miles (2,740 km)    

Service ceiling 25,400 ft (7,740 m)   

Rate of climb: 1,600 ft/min (490 m/min)   

The VC 66 which served the Brazilian President was restored and is in permanent display at the Museu Aeroespacial.   

C-60 parked at Afonsos Field, Rio De Janeiro.  Photo by Francisco C. Pereira Netto.

C-60 is seen parked at the ramp at the 4th Air Zone, Sao Paulo.


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