The D.500, designed by Émile Dewoitine
, was based on C1
specifications issued in 1930 by the French Air Ministry, and was to be a replacement for the Nieuport 62
. The prototype first flew on 18 June 1932.
In November 1933, sixty aircraft were ordered, with the first production D.500 flying on 29 November 1934.
Aircraft armed with a 20 mm cannon
firing through the propeller hub - instead of two nose-mounted machine guns
- received the designation D.501
A total of 381 D.500s and its derivatives were built.