The Mitsubishi B5MMabel” was a WWII, ground-attack aircraft in service with the Imperial Japanese Navy from 1937 to 1945. Although it was a naval plane, it was not designed to take off and land from the deck of aircraft carriers. It operated from land bases in China and Japanese-held islands in the Pacific. It first saw combat action in early 1938, during the Japanese invasion of China. To be a small aircraft, it had a high bombload capacity and a rather long range. However, it was a slow monoplane and most of them were wiped out of the sky by the American carrier-based fighers before the end of the war.

The B5M was a two-seat, single-engined, low-winged aircraft, with all-metal fuselage and fixed landing gear. It was powered by one Mitsubishi Kinsel 43 engine, which generated 1,000 hp. To perform its ground-attack role, it carried up to 1,000 kg of bombs and was armed with two 7.7mm machine guns, installed in the wings, and one backward-firing 7.7mm machine gun mounted in rear cockpit and operated by gunner. Mitsubishi manufactured only 125 B5Ms.

Specifications

Type: ground-attack aircraft

Wingspan:50′ 2″ (15.3 m)

Length: 33′ 9″ (10.23 m)

Height: 14′ 2″ (4.3 m)

Maximum speed: 203 mph (379 km/h)

Range: 1,460 miles (2,350 km)

Mitsubishi_B5M

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