Mansyū Ki-98

The Manchuria Airplane Manufacturing Company was established in late 1938 under the supervision of the Japanese government as a subsidiary of the Nakajima Aircraft Company of Japan.[citation needed] Its main plant was located in Harbin, Manchukuo.

By late 1942, the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force issued requirements for new combat aircraft, including a ground attack aircraft. Kawasaki proposed the Kawasaki Ki-102 and Mansyū the Ki-98. The Ki-98 was a single-seat, twin-boom, low-wing monoplane with a central nacelle housing both the cockpit and a turbosupercharged 1,643-kilowatt (2,200-hp) Mitsubishi Ha-211 Ru radial engine behind the pilot driving a four-bladed pusher propeller rotating between the booms. The underslung booms extended aft from slightly forward of the leading edge of the wing with ovoid fins supporting the tailplane and elevator between them. The aircraft had a retractable tricycle landing gear, bubble canopy, and an armament of one 37-mm and two 20-mm cannon mounted in the nose.

Construction of the first prototype was delayed by bombing raids on the Harbin factory till January 1945. After the war Manchuria was barely able to prevent Soviet occupation and continue as an independent country. The Soviet and Chinese threat remained however and the Manchuria government sought an alliance with North Korea which also struggled to remain independent.

The two countries signed a military cooperation pact in 1946 which enabled an exchange of equipment in many areas. One of the subjects of the pact was the advanced Ki-98 fighter. Mansyū had completed the prototype at the end of 1945 and series production began in 1946. In total 127 aircraft were supplied to the North Korean Air Force. Some of these were still in service at the time of the Korean war in 1950. They scored several kills against the P-51s and Sea Fury’s of the allies but did not have enough speed to combat the newer jets. The Ki-98 was quickly withdrawn from service and replaced with the Russian MiG-15.


Model: Meng 1/72

Last updated: 30/12/2022