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IJAAF Japanese pilots of 244 Sentai Tembico Kobayashi 2nd from right 01

IJAAF Japanese pilots of 244-Sentai Tembico Kobayashi 2nd from right 01

Kawasaki Ki-61 Hien 飛燕 - 'Flying Swallow'

National origin:- Japan
Role:- Fighter
Manufacturer:- Kawasaki Kōkūki Kōgyō K.K.
First flight:- December 1941
Introduction:- 1942
Retired:- 1945 (Japan)
Primary users:- Imperial Japanese Army Air Service, Chinese Nationalist Air Force, People's Liberation Army Air Force
Produced between 1940–1945:- 3,078
Variants:- Kawasaki Ki-100

The Kawasaki Ki-61 Hien (飛燕, 'flying swallow') is a Japanese World War II fighter aircraft used by the Imperial Japanese Army Air Service. The Japanese Army designation was 'Army Type 3 Fighter' (三式戦闘機). Allied pilots initially believed Ki-61s were Messerschmitt Bf 109s and later an Italian aircraft, which led to the Allied reporting name of 'Tony', assigned by the United States War Department. It was the only mass-produced Japanese fighter of the war to use a liquid-cooled inline V engine. Over 3,000 Ki-61s were produced. Initial prototypes saw action over Yokohama during the Doolittle Raid on 18 April 1942, and continued to fly combat missions throughout the war.

 

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This webpage was updated 28th January 2017