Fw 190A-3 versus mustang 1A (p-51a)
rae comparative report
Climb: The climb of the Fw 190 is superior to that of the Mustang 1A at all heights. The best climbing speed for the Mustang is approximately 10mph slower than that for the Fw 190; the angle is not nearly so steep and the rate of climb is considerably inferior. When both aircraft are pulled up into a climb after a fast dive, the inferiority in the initial stage of the climb is not so marked, but if the climb is continued the Fw 190 draws away rapidly.
Dive: Comparative dives have shown that there is little to choose between the two aircraft and if anything the Mustang is slightly faster in a prolonged dive. manoeuvrability: The manoeuvrability of the Fw 190 is better than that of the Mustang except in turning circles where the Mustang is superior. In the rolling plane at high speed the Mustang compares more favourably with the Fw 190 than does the Spitfire. The acceleration of the Fw 190 under all conditions of flight is slightly better than that of the Mustang and this becomes more marked when both aircraft are cruising at low speed. When the Fw 190 was attacked by the Mustang in a turn, the usual manoeuvre of flicking into a diving turn in the opposite direction was not so effective against the Mustang as against the Spitfire, particularly if the aircraft were flying at high speed. The fact that the engine of the Mustang does not cut during the application of negative G proved a great asset and gave the Mustang a reasonable chance of following the Fw 190 and shooting it down. It must be appreciated, however, that much depends on which aircraft
has the initiative and that obviously the Fw 190 can escape if the Mustang is seen well out of range. The Fw 190 in this case will almost certainly utilise its superior climb. Trials were carried out to ascertain the best manoeuvre to adopt when ‘bounced’. If the Mustang was cruising at high speed and saw the Fw 190 about 2000 yards away, it usually managed to avoid it by opening up to full throttle and diving away, and once speed had been built up it was almost impossible for the Fw 190 to catch it. When the Mustang was ‘bounced’ by the Fw 190 when flying slowly, it was unable to get away by diving and was forced to evade by means of a quick turn as the Fw 190 came into firing range. When the Fw 190 was ‘bounced’ by the Mustang, it could evade by using its superiority in the rolling plane and then pull up violently from the resultant dive into a steep climb which left the Mustang behind. If the Mustang is not seen until it is fairly close, it will get the chance of a short burst before it is out climbed. Against the Fw 190 the worst heights for the Mustang 1A were above 20,000ft and below 3000ft where the Fw 190 is slightly superior in speed. The best height for the Mustang was found to be between 5000ft and 15,000ft.