Générale d'Aviation Marcel Dassault Mirage IIIC
The Mirage III was a multirole combat aircraft designed in the 1950s. Initially developed as an interceptor, a total of 80 different versions were later built to suit the needs of various export customers.
It is generally considered to be one of the best combat aircraft of its day, and certainly remains one of the greatest commercial successes of a European aircraft.
On the 24th of October 1958, the Mirage III A became the first European aircraft to achieve level flight at Mach 2, just one month ahead of the English Electric Lightning. The French Air Force became a member of the Mach 2 Club, whilst experiencing the particularities of flying a delta-wing aircraft at supersonic speed and into the stratosphere. After the initial interceptor version, three other variants were developed: a two-seat trainer, a ground attack version and a reconnaissance version.
The success of this airframe also came from the way its manufacturing process was organised: all Mirage III were assembled in Mérignac, near Bordeaux, as a generic version; and only at the end of this process were the aircraft given specific equipment according to its mission and the country that had ordered it.
The Mirage IIIC is therefore considered as being one of the first multirole jets. Some variants remained in French service until 1988.
This Mirage belonged to Fighter Squadron 3/10 Vexin, which was created on the 1st of September 1978, and inherited the traditions of the Mousquetaires Fighter Group, which fought during the opening months of World War II before being disbanded in July 1940.
Ailes Anciennes Toulouse Collection