The British were recently fortunate enough to capture, undamaged, a new FW-190 fighter.
This is the plane the Germans claim to be the world's fastest and most maneuverable
fighter. In any event it is not a copy of existing German types, but a very much
improved combat aircraft.
The FW-190 is a cantilever-type, low-wing, all-metal monoplane of stressed skin construction
with retractable landing gear and split flaps. A very clean-cut long N.A.C.A.-type cowling
blends smoothly into a large cross-sectioned fuselage which tapers sharply to the tail.
In appearance the fuselage somewhat resembles our Curtiss P-36 and Vultee Vanguard while the
wings are similar to the British Spitfire.
Powered with a new BMW (Bavarian Motor Works) 801, 14-cylinder, twin-row, air-cooled,
radial engine which is reported to develop about 1,700 H.P., it is believed
capable of a top speed of about 390 m.p.h. The service ceiling is estimated
around 39,000 feet and the range approximately 380 miles. Both the engine cowling
and the cockpit are fully armored. The windshield is of very heavy bullet-proof glass
and the fuel tanks are self-sealing. Reports vary as to armament, but the captured
plane carried four 20-mm. cannons and two 7.9-mm. machine guns.
No equipment for bombs was found but it is believed that a 2,200-lb. bomb
could be carried, or that racks for smaller bombs can be fitted similar to
those used on other German fighters.