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Soviet Union's Petlyakov Pe-2 bomber


  • Iliushin Pe-2 dive-bomber
  • Iliushin Pe-2 dive-bomber
  • Petlyakov Pe-2 bomber


Starting in 1938 Vladimir M. Petlyakov started work on the design for the Petlyakov Pe-2, that was to be a high altitude fighter but it came into service as a dive-bomber.1,3,4,6 The cabin was initially going to be pressurized for the fighter, but the specifications changed it to be a bomber.4

The Pe-2 was often a test bed for new equipment such as ejection seats, rocket motors, and heavy cannons.1


The Pe-2 was constructed from all metal components.4

Crew Compartment

The radio operator sat back to back with the pilot.1 He could then crawl under the pilot seat to the bomb aimer position.1 The cockpit had excellent views for the crew.1

Some high altitude versions had pressurized cabins.1

The rear gunner used a hand held MG.1


The undercarriage was wide allowing for use on rough airstrips.1 Although, the Pe-2 was sometimes known for heavy bouncing on landings.1 The undercarriage was also retractable.4

In the winter skis could be used.1


The tail of the Pe-2 was of metal construction with fabric covering control surfaces.1


The Pe-2's engines had electrical two speed superchargers.1


There were eleven fuel tanks in the wings of the Pe-2.1 These would feed header tanks above each of the engines.1 Inert exhaust gases were fed to the tanks for fire suppression.1

  • Range and Bomb Load Comparison


The VI-100 prototype first flew in 1939 / May 7, 19396.2,3,4 The tests showed that the bomb site was inadequate at high altitudes so the design was to change it into a dive bomber instead.4,6 The turbo chargers were removed and dive brakes added.6

The Pe-2 first flew in June 1940.3

In the 1940 May Day fly past, the prototype Pe-2 made its first public appearance.1


Was ordered into production in 1940 as a light bomber.1

Production started in June 1940.2 It ended in 1945.3

  • VI-100:
  • PB-100 (pikiruyushchii bombardirovshchik): 26
  • Petlyakov Pe-3bis: ~3003
  • Total: 11,4001,2, 11,4273,6
    • Manufacturer: State Industries4
  • Bomber Production Comparison


  • Petlyakov VI-100: Prototype.2,6 Had Hispano-Suiza copied engines.2
  • Petlyakov PB-100: New designation for the VI-100.3
  • Iliushin Pe-2, Petlyakov Pe-2: Dive bomber.5 Dive brakes were added to allow for shallow dive bombing.2
  • Petlyakov Pe-2FT: Late 1942.6 Used Klimov M-105PF (1,260 HP) engines.6 Dorsal turret had a 12.7 mm UBT machine gun.6
  • Petlyakov Pe-2l: Fighter bomber.3,6 Had VK-107 /VK-107A6 engines (1,620 HP).3
  • Petlyakov Pe-2M: Fighter bomber.3,6 Two seat.3 Had VK-107A engines (1,620 HP).6
  • Petlyakov Pe-2Sh: Ground attack with oblique firing guns.1
  • Petlyakov Pe-2R: Long range reconnaissance.1,2,3,6 Had extra fuel.1,3 No bombs, and only 3 MGs.1
  • Petlyakov Pe-2RD: Experimental rocket booster in tail.3
  • Petlyakov Pe-2Sh: Heavy ground attack.3 Experimental.3
  • Petlyakov Pe-2U: Training version.1,2 Had second cockpit.1
  • Petlyakov Pe-2UT: Trainer.3,6 Dual controls.3,6
  • Petlyakov Pe-2VI: High altitude fighter version.1
  • Petlyakov Pe-3: Bomber intercepter.3 Had dive brakes.3 Dorsal turret.3
  • Petlyakov Pe-3bis: Maneuver flaps.3
  • Petlyakov Pe-21: Heavy fighter.2


The Pe-2 was used by the Soviet Union and captured ones were used by Finland.3

The Pe-2 entered service in August 1940 / 19414,5.3

Vladimir M. Petlyakov

The bureau chief Vladimir M. Petlyakov died in a test flight of the Pe-2 on January 12, 1942.1

Against the Germans

There were 458 Pe-2s when Germany invaded.6

If enemy fighters caught up to a lightly loaded Pe-2 it could sometimes maneuver away from them because of it's nimbleness.1

Against the Japanese

A few Pe-2s saw service against Japan at the end of the war.3


Finland used seven Pe-2s, that were from German captured equipment, and one Pe-3bis that was captured.3

After World War II

Experimental versions mounted several rocket engines and German pulse jets.1

In the late 1950s NATO gave it the name "Buck."1

Czechoslovakia (called B-32), Poland, and Yugoslavia were supplied with Pe-2s.3


Crew 26
Engine (Type) 2: M-105R6
Cylinders V 126
HP 1,100 each6
Speed at 32,810' / 10,000 m 387 mph6
623 kph6
  Iliushin Pe-2, Petlyakov Pe-2
Type Bomber1,2,3,4, Dive bomber5,6, Ground attack3, Heavy Fighter4, Night fighter4, Reconnaissance3,4, Fighter bomber3, Light Bomber6, Medium Bomber6
Crew 31,2,4,6, 3 or 43
Pilot, bombardier, gunner6
Engine (Type) 2: Klimov VK-105PF1,2,3
OR 2: Klimov VK-105R3,4,6
Cylinders PF: V 121,3
R: V 123,4,6
Cooling Liquid5
PF: Liquid1
R: Liquid4
HP PF: 1,260 each1,2,3
R: 1,100 each3,4,6
Propeller blades 31,3 , 3 blade VISh-616
Span 56'5, 56' 3.5"2,3,6, 56' 4"4, 58' 2"1
17.11 m1, 17.16 m2,3,6
Length 40'5, 41' 6"4, 41' 6.5"2,3,6, 41' 11"1
12.66 m2,3,6, 12.78 m1
Height 11' 3"1, 11' 6"2,3, 13' 1"4, 13' 1.5"6
3.42 m1, 3.5 m2,3, 4 m6
Wing area 436 ft2 1,2,6
40.5 m2 1,2,6
Empty 12,943 lb3,6, 13,640 lb1
5,871 kg3, 5,876 kg6, 6,200 kg1
Loaded 16,934 lb4, 18,730 lb3,6, 18,744 lb1
8,496 kg3,6, 8,520 kg1
Speed 278 mph1, 300 mph5
449 kph1
Speed at 9,845' / 3,000 m 360 mph2
580 kph2
Speed at 16,000' 336 mph4
Speed at 16,405' / 5,000 m 336 mph3,6
540 kph6, 541 kph3
Cruising speed 266 mph3,6
428 kph3,6
Climb 1,410'/minute2, 1,430'/minute3
430 m/minute2, 435 m/minute3
Climb to 16,405' / 5,000 m 7 minutes6
Service ceiling 28,870'2,3,6, 28,900'1,4
8,800 m1,2,3,6
Range 721 miles2, 815 miles1, 932 miles3,4,6
1,160 km2, 1,315 km1, 1,500 km3,6
Armament 5: MG4
Nose 2: 7.62 mm MG3
2: 7.62 mm ShKAS MG1,6
2: 12.7 mm UBS2
OR 2: 12.7 mm MG3
1: 7.62 mm ShKAS MG6
1: 12.7 mm Beresin UBT MG6
Dorsal turret 1: 7.62 mm MG3, 7.62 mm ShKAS MG6
1: 12.7 mm UBT1,2
OR 1: 12.7 mm MG3, 12.7 mm UBT MG6
Ventral 1: 7.62 mm MG3
1: 7.62 mm ShKAS MG1,6
1: 12.7 mm UBT2
OR 1: 12.7 mm MG3, 12.7 mm UBT MG6
Rear beam 1: 7.62 mm ShKAS MG1
2: 7.62 mm ShKAS MG2
Bomb bay 4: 220 lb bombs1
4: 100 kg bombs1
Rear of engine 2: 220 lb bombs1
2: 100 kg bombs1
Under fuselage 4: 550 lb bombs1
4: 250 kg bombs1
Bombs - total 2,200 lb4, 2,205 lb3, 2,205 - 6,614 lb2, 2,646 lb6
1,000 kg3, 1,000 kg - 3,000 kg2, 1,200 kg6
  Petlyakov Pe-3bis
Type Reconnaissance fighter1
Engine (Type) 2: M-107A3
HP 1,600 each3
Nose 2: 12.7 mm MG3
2: 20 mm3
Under wing 132 mm rockets3


  1. Aircraft of WWII, General Editor: Jim Winchester, 2004
  2. Fighting Aircraft of World War II, Editor: Karen Leverington, 1995
  3. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  4. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  5. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
  6. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
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