The Martin B-26 Marauder was neither as versatile nor as capable as its brethren, the B-17 and B-24. What appeared acceptable on paper in 1939 simply didn't match up with reality when the first 139 B-26A's were delivered to the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1941. Because wing loading was incredibly higher than anticipated, dangerously high landing speeds were required. After several crashes in training, the remaining crews were completely demoralized. After an official inquiry by the government, Martin went back to the drawing boards to address this and other crew survivability concerns.

The B-26B featured an increased wingspan that brought loading within tolerable limits. The plane's control surfaces, particular the tail, were enlarged as well to allow for more stable handling characteristics. Additional crew armor was added and there were improvements to the defensive firepower also.

Martin B-26B Marauder

Wingspan: 65 ft. 0 in.
Length: 58 ft. 3 in.
Height: 19 ft. 10 in.
Engine: 2 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-41 Double Wasp rated 2,000 hp
Loaded Weight: 34,000 lb.
Maximum Speed: 317 mph.
Service Ceiling: 23,500 ft.
Combat Radius: 575 miles
Armaments: 3,000 lbs. of bombs, 7 x .50 cal. machine guns
Defensive Fire Arc: