Alternative RAF Fighters


1940:   No Spitfire Mk I and Hurricane Mk I but Martin Baker Viper Mk I

After Rolls Royce could not get the Merlin Engine to work reliable, the RAF turned to Martin Baker for its new fighter. The Napier Dagger engined Martin Baker MB-2 was named Viper and entered service in early 1939. In the Battle of Britain it proved inferior to the Me-109 both in speed and climb but managed to hold back the Luftwaffe, although just barely.

1943:   No Spitfire Mk IX but Martin Baker Python Mk IV

In the Battle of Britain the Viper proved inferior to the Me-109. This caused the RAF to accelerate the search for a successor to the MB-2. This turned out to be the Martin Baker MB-3 with a Napier Sabre engine of 2000hp. This proved more than a match to the Me-109 and was on equal footing with the new Focke Wulf FW-190.


1944:   No Hawker Typhoon Mk Ia but Hawker Tornado Mk II


After the debacle with the Merlin engine Rolls Royce put all its energy in the Vulture. And with success. The Vulture engined Tornado proved superior to the Napier Sabre engined Typhoon in almost every aspect.  Also this freed the Sabre production for the Python fighter, so the RAF chose the Tornado over the Typhoon. The Tornado was used as a fighter and an attack aircraft over France.




Last updated: 31/10/2017