The P 149D, a fully acrobatic four-seat aircraft, was developed from the P148, a twin-seater, in the early 1950s at the PIAGGIO factory in Genoa, Italy.

The prototypes used a LYCOMING GO-435 engine.
(Today, one of these airplanes is based at Palatka, Kay Larkin Airport, Florida, USA.)

The production airplane, which was a little bit bigger and heavier, used the GO-480 instead (274 HP).

The maiden flight was on the 19th of June 1953. The German Forces picked the aircraft as a trainer, ahead of the Beechcraft T34 Mentor and the Saab 91 Safir, mainly because of its big cabin, since the plane should also serve as a liaison aircraft for the German Air force and the German Navy.

The German Forces got 72 "Piggis" as unassembled kits from the Italian factory. They carry Piaggio-Dataplates and S/Ns between 250 and 325 but were put together in Germany. Thereafter, the type certificate was sold to Focke Wulf and the whole production-line was moved to Bremen/Germany. Here another 190 examples have been produced for the German Military. They carry Focke Wulf Data-plates and S/Ns from 001 to 190. Even the engines had been license-built by BMW in Bavaria. (Powered by BMW! Engine S/Ns start with a B-)

Total production was 280 aircraft. Most of them were military, but a few examples went to private customers. SWISSAIR, for example, bought five "Piggis" (P 149Es) for their now abandoned flight academy in Zurich, Switzerland. A few more were delivered to the Uganda Airforce (P 149Us).

The last P 149D was retired from the German Airforce on the 31st of March 1990 at Fuerstenfeldbruck, Bavaria, Germany. For this occasion, it got a very special paint job: The German- as well as the Bavarian colors.

Few "Piggis" are still flying with military flying clubs.
Most airplanes have been purchased by private party.