Aviation of World War II

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A-5M "Claude"

Shipborne Fighter


A5M Claude

The importance of the A-5M carrier-based fighter for the development of Japanese industry and military potential in the mid-1930s cannot be overestimated. The creation of this aircraft meant the end of Japan's dependence on imports of European military equipment and opened up for the country the possibility of building its own carrier-based aircraft, whose aircraft in all respects - speed, armament and maneuverability - could be compared with the best Western models.

The first of six prototypes of this aircraft took off in February 1935, and the A-5M1 aircraft began to enter service in the spring of 1937. The total production of this type of aircraft was 980 aircraft in modifications from A-5M1 to A-5M4, the latter had an open cockpit instead of a closed one. In addition, 103 two-seat training aircraft A-5M4-K were manufactured. In general, the Japanese naval aviation was armed with more than 1000 such machines, they were withdrawn from the first line units only in 1943.

They practically did not participate in hostilities.

A5M4 Specification
Crew 1
Wing span, m 11.00
Length, m 7.56
1 ? PE Kotobuku 41, hp 690
Weight, kg:
Empty weight 1216
Maximum takeoff weight 1708
Maximum speed, km/h 447
Time to 3000m, min 3.9
Service ceiling, m 9800
Service range, km 740
Service range with external fuel tanks, km 1200
2 × 7.7-mm Type 89 machine guns, external bomb load, kg 60 *

* Usually, instead of a 50-kilogram bomb, a suspended fuel tank of 60 liters of fuel was suspended under the fuselage of the same weight.


  • "Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War." /Francillon, Ph.D., Rene J./
  • "Warplanes of the Second World War" /Green, William./