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United States' Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber

Photos

  • Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee A-35 Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee TT Mk IV Target Tug
  • Vultee Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee Vengeance dive bomber
  • Vultee Vengeance Mk II dive bomber
  • Vultee Vengeance Mk II dive bomber
  • Vultee Vengeance dive bomber

Design

As a result of the success of the Junkers Ju 87 in the Spanish Civil War Britain wanted a dive bomber for the Royal Air Force (RAF).

Prototype

The Vultee prototype first flew in March 1941 / July 1941.

Production

In 1940, 700 Vultee V-72s were ordered by the British. 600 more were added to Great Britain's order in June 1941.

  • Vultee A-31, Vultee Vengeance Mk I: 400
  • Vultee A-31, Vultee Vengeance Mk IA: 200
  • Vultee V-72, Vultee Vengeance Mk II: 300
  • Vultee A-31, Vultee Vengeance Mk III: 100
  • Vultee A-35A: 100
  • Vultee A-35B, Vultee Vengeance Mk IV: 831
  • Total: 1,528, 1,931
    • Manufacturer: Vultee Aircraft Inc., Northrop
    • Manufacturing Locations: Nashville, Tennessee; Hawthorne, California

Variants

  • Vultee V-72:
  • Vultee A-31: First version of the Vengeance. Later changed to A-35.
  • Vultee A-35, Vengeance Mk IV:
  • Vultee A-35A: Machine guns upgraded to .50 cal.
  • Vultee A-35B: More horsepower. Bomb load increased.
  • Vultee XA-31A/B: Engine test aircraft for the B-29's engine, the Wright R-3350.
  • Vultee YA-31C: Engine test aircraft for the B-29's engine, the Wright R-3350.

Usage

The Vultee Vengeance was used by Australia (342), Brazil (29), Britain (1,205 / 1,220), India(~30), and the United States (323).

Units

  • Burma: No 45, No 82, No 84, No 110

Unkind Words

In 1943 a United States Army Air Force (USAAF) General stated that the Vengeance was "a shining example of waste of material, manpower, and time.

Britain

Britain started to receive deliveries of the V-72 in late 1942. It was found that the Vengeances would be easy targets for Axis fighters so it was decided to send them to India and Burma. They were used in Burma from March 1943 to June 1944.

Great Britain received a total of 1,205 Vengeances.

Australia

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) had five squadrons equipped with Vengeances operating in New Guinea. After it was discovered the Vengeance was unstable they were converted to communication and target tug aircraft.

United States

The USAAF received 99 A-35s and 224 / 243 of the Vengeance Mk IIs that were diverted from Britain's order. These too eventually became target tugs.

These were soon relegated to utilitarian duties as the P-47 and A-36 were coming available.

Specifications

  Vultee Vengeance
Type Dive bomber
Crew 2
Dimensions  
Span 48'
14.63 m
Length 39' 9"
12.11 m
Height 15' 4"
4.67 m
  Vultee Vengeance A-31, Vengeance Mk I
Type Dive Bomber
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Wright R-2600-19 Cyclone, Wright R-2600-A5B-5
Cylinders Radial, Radial 14
Cooling Air
HP 1,600, 1,700
Propeller blades 3
Dimensions  
Span 48'
14.63 m
Length 39' 9"
12.12 m
Height 12' 10"
3.91 m
Wing area 332 sq ft
30.84 sq m
Weight  
Empty 10,300 lb
4,672 kg
Loaded 14,300 lb, 16,400 lb
6,486 kg, 7,440 kg
Performance  
Speed at 13,500' / 4,115 m 279 mph
449 kph
Climb to 15,000' / 4,570 m 11 minutes 18 seconds
Service ceiling 22,300'
6,795 m
Armament  
Wings 4: 0.303" MG
4: 0.3" / 7.62 mm MG
Rear cockpit 2: 0.303" MG
2: 0.3" / 7.62 mm MG
Bombs - Internal 4: 500 lb
2,000 lb
4: 227 kg
907 kg
  Vultee Vengeance A-35A
Type Bomber
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Wright R-2600-13 Cyclone, Wright R-2600-19 Cyclone
Cylinders Radial 14
Cooling Air
HP 1,600, 1,700
Propeller blades 3
Dimensions  
Span 48'
Length 39' 9"
Height 15' 4"
Weight  
Loaded 16,400 lb
Performance  
Speed at 13,500' / 4,115 m 279 mph
Service ceiling 22,300'
Range 2,300 miles
Armament 5: MG
Wings 4: 0.5" MG
Rear cockpit 1: 0.5" MG
Bombs 2,000 lb
  Vultee Vengeance A-35B
Type Dive Bomber
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Wright R-2600-13 Cyclone
Wright R-2600-13 Twin Cyclone
Cylinders Radial 14
Cooling Air
HP 1,700
Propeller blades 3, 3 constant speed
Dimensions  
Span 48'
Length 39' 9"
Wing area 332 sq ft
Weight  
Empty 10,300 lb
4,672 kg
Loaded 16,400 lb
7,439 kg
Performance  
Speed at 13,500' / 4,115 m 279 mph
449 kph
Cruising speed 230 mph
370 kph
Climb 1,200'/minute
366 m/minute
Climb to 15,000' / 4,570 m 11.3 minutes
Service ceiling 22,300'
6,800 m
Range 600 miles
965 kph
Range - loaded 550 miles
Range - max 2,300 miles
3,700 km
Armament  
Wings 6: 0.5" MG
6: .50 cal MG
Rear cockpit 1: .50 cal MG
Bombs - internal 1,000 lb
Bombs - wing 500 lb

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  2. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  3. American Attack Aircraft Since 1926, E. R. Johnson, 2012
  4. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, General Editor Chris Bishop, 1998
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site