Continental A-65-8, Horizontally-Opposed 4 Engine

Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Collection Item Summary:

Continental Motors was the world’s largest manufacturer of automotive engines during the 1920’s. Its earliest venture in aircraft engines during the mid-1920s was the radial type, but Continental only became successful in aviation with the horizontally opposed type. The combination of the Continental A-65 engine and the Piper J-3 Cub airframe promoted the great growth of sport aviation by providing a dependable, inexpensive airplane with adequate performance and in sufficient quantity to support good service facilities at almost any airport.

During World War II, this engine, under the designation O-170, was adopted by the U.S. Army as the standard engine for use in all light liaison aircraft. After the war, the A-65 powered such well known airplanes as the Piper PA-11 Cub Special, the Taylorcraft Model 47, and the Luscombe Model 8A Silvaire. A large number of home-built airplanes were also powered by the A-65. From 1938 to 1966, more than 10,000 A-65 engines were built.