High Quality Content by WIKIPEDIA articles! The Savoia-Marchetti
SM.81 first saw combat during the Second Italo-Abyssinian War,
where it showed itself to be versatile, serving as a bomber,
transport and reconnaissance aircraft. SM.81s also fought in the
Spanish Civil War with the Aviazione Legionaria and were among the
first aircraft sent by the fascist powers to aid Francisco Franco.
In spite of their obsolescence, when Italy became involved in the
Second World War, approximately 300 SM.81s were in service with the
Regia Aeronautica. Its low speed and vulnerability to fighter
aircraft meant that daytime duties were second line, with the
aircraft being used primarily as a transport. At night, the SM.81
was an effective bomber, particularly in the North African theatre.
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