First flown in June 1931, the MC.72 was a single-seat twin-float seaplane built to compete in the 1931 Schneider Trophy Contest. The unique engine was effectively two in tandem droving separate (counter-rotating) propellors.
In late 1927, Italian Mario de Bernardi upped the world absolute speed record mark to 298 mph with a Macchi M-52 seaplane developed from the M-39 in which he had won the 1926 Schneider Race. He soon raised the mark to 318 mph with the same airplane.
Problems with the Fiat 24 cylinder engine hp prevented it taking part in the Schneider seaplane contests, but Francesco Agello boosted the 3 km speed record with it to 423.57 mph 10 April 1933 and then 100 km speed record to 390.8 mph. The Coupe de Vitesse Louis Bleriot record of 30 min was raised to 384.86 mph. A world speed record was established in 1934 at 440.67 mph.
The Schneider Trophy never experienced any casualties during competition, but several pilots were killed training for the races. Italy had five casualties: Vittorio Centurione in 1926 in a Macchi M-39; Giuseppe Motta in 1929 in a Macchi M-67; Tomasso Dal Molin in 1930 in a Savoia S.65; Giovani Monti and Stanislao Bellini in 1931 in a Macchi MC-72.
Engine (1934): Fiat AS.6 24 cyl., 2300 hp
Engine (1934): Fiat AS.6 24 cyl., 2500 hp
Engine (1934): Fiat AS.6 24 cyl., 2800 hp
Prop: Twin CR
Engine: 2 x Fiat A.S.6, 2280kW
Take-Off Weight: 2907 kg / 6409 lb
Empty Weight: 2500 kg / 5512 lb
Wingspan: 9.5 m / 31 ft 2 in
Length: 8.2 m / 26 ft 11 in
Height: 3.3 m / 10 ft 10 in
Max. Speed: 702 km/h / 436 mph