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Focke-Wulf Fw 190

The Focke-Wulf Fw 190 Würger, was a German, single-seat, single-engine fighter aircraft designed by Kurt Tank in the 1930s. It was used by the Luftwaffe during the Second World War. It partially replaced the Messerschmitt Bf 109 in 1941. Over 20,000 were manufactured, including around 6,000 fighter-bomber models. Production ran from 1941 to the end of hostilities, during which time the aircraft was continually updated. Its later versions retained qualitative parity with Allied fighter aircraft. The Fw 190 was well-liked by its pilots, and was quickly proven to be superior in all but turn radius to the Royal Air Force’s main front line fighter, the Spitfire Mk. V variant, on its combat debut in 1941. The early Fw 190As performance decreased at high altitudes which complicated its use as a high altitude interceptor. These complications were mostly rectified in later models and the introduction of the Focke-Wulf Fw 190D variant. Like the Bf 109, the Fw 190 was employed as a “workhorse”, and proved suitable for a wide variety of roles, including Air superiority fighter, Strike fighter, Ground-attack aircraft, Escort fighter, and Night fighter. Some of the Luftwaffe’s most successful fighter aces flew the Fw 190. Erich Rudorffer claimed 222 kills, Otto Kittel 267 victories, and Walter Nowotny 258 victories. A great many of their kills were claimed while flying the Fw 190.

Fw 190

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Fw 190 A

Role

Fighter

Manufacturer

Primarily Focke-Wulf Flugzeugbau AG, but also Ago, Arado, Fieseler, Mimetall, Norddeutsche Dornier and others

Designed by

Kurt Tank

First flight

1-Jun-39

Introduced

Aug-41

Retired

1945 (Luftwaffe); 1949 (Turkey)

Primary users

Luftwaffe

Hungarian Air Force

Turkish Air Force

Romanian Air Force

Produced

1941-1945; (1996: 16 reproductions)

Number built

Over 20,000

Variants

Ta 152

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