North American XB-70 "Valkyrie" Supersonic Bomber (1964)
About the Design
The XB-70 was conceived in the 1950s by the Strategic Air Command (SAC) which was hot for a supersonic bomber that could run Mach 3 missions into the heart of the big bad Soviet Union. Budget constraints limited the actual production of this sleek delta-winged plane to just two test aircraft. The first test plane first took to the air on September 1, 1964, and cracked Mach 3 on October 14, 1965. Tragically, the second plane collided with one of its photographic escorts on June 8, 1966, and crashed -- forever sealing the fate of this ambitious program.
About the Kit
This is not the best of the XB-70 kits ever produced, and in fact various sources list its scale as either 1/170 or 1/180, both odd ducks to say the least. The kit was re-released in the 1990s and in 2001. This particular model, an original 1960's issue, was built with its landing gear retracted.