The Brewster Aeronautical Corporation’s follow-on to the lackluster SBA/SBN scout bomber was the SB2A Buccaneer. This later aircraft was designed with an internal bay for a 1,000-pound bomb load and was fitted with two forward-firing .30-caliber machine guns in the wings and two in the forward fuselage and a two-gun dorsal gun turret, connected to the cockpit by a solid fuselage. Only some of the SB2A variants had folding wings and arresting hooks to make them suitable for carrier operations.
The prototype XSB2A-1 made its first flight on 17 June 1941. Large orders for the aircraft already were on the books: Britain ordered 750 in July 1940—with the name Bermuda—and the Dutch government-in-exile in Britain ordered 162 for use in the Dutch East Indies.1 The U.S. Navy ordered 140 of the bombers on 24 December 1940. Production aircraft dispensed with the dorsal power turret in favor of twin .30-caliber guns in the aft cockpit (the prototype having had a dummy turret).