Jump to content

German copies and opponents of the Po-2/U-2


99 members have voted

  1. 1. Observers

    • Hs-126
    • Fw-189
    • Fi-156
  2. 2. Night Bombers

    • Fw-58
    • Ar-66c (or Go-145)
    • Ju-87D5 (>1943)
  3. 3. Hunters

    • Fw-58
    • Fw-189
    • He-111 night fighter

Recommended Posts




German forces quickly found that conventional night fighters were too fast to safely intercept the Po-2\U-2 biplanes.


From late 1942 onward the Luftwaffe attempted to imitate the “night witches” with their own harassment squadrons (often using more powerful but lightly armed aircraft)


I have organised these aircraft into three groups: Those being operated in similar non-combat roles (observers), those being used as harassment aircraft with bombs (bombers), and those pressed into service as low-speed night fighters (hunters).


For comparison



- One defensive ShKAS

- Up to 6xFAB50 bombs, also hand dropped bombs

- Sometimes, anti-tank or incendiary bomblets, or up to eight rockets. Also paratroopers or cargo.

- Rarely one fixed forward firing gun (both an early variant, and a later field mod)

- 152 km/h, 41 kg/m², 770kg empty weight, 125 hp



- Up to one flexible 12.7mm UBK, and up to two flexible ShKAS

- One fixed ShKAS (and once 2x45mm cannon in 1944!)

- Up to 2000 kg of bombs

- Up to 8 rockets.

- 300 km/h, 116.7 kg/m²,  7,750 kg, 2x987 hp


Now the German aircraft


Henschel 126

- Late 1942 (use as night bombs, common recon aircraft earlier)

- 1xSC50 and/or 5xSC10

- Fixed Mg17 and flexible Mg15 (975 rounds)

- 356 km/h, 97.8 kg/m² wing loading, 2000kg empty weight, 850 hp



Converted Trainer Biplane (Ar-66, Go-145)

- December 1942 (Use as night bombers)

- 2kg-4kg bombs or 1xsc50

- Rarely a single defensive Mg15

- 210 km/h, ~45 kg/m², ~800-900 kg empty weight, 240 hp





Junkers 87 D5

- May 1943 (although mainly 1944)

- Extended wingspan compared to the D3 (along with flame dampers and numerous small changes)

- 1800kg of bombs

- 2x20mm Mg-151, 1xMg81z defensive gun

- 400 km/h, 196 kg/m2,3940 kg, 1391hp




Focke-Wulf Fw-58 “Weihe”

- Used as a night fighter from Stalingrad onward

- 12xSC10

- 4xMg-17 fixed forward firing guns (Mg-151 jazz music installation only appeared in 1944)

- Possibly WB-81 gunpods (6xMg-81z) if photographs can be found

- Sometimes a flexible defensive gun

- 256 km/h, 59.8 kg/m², 1900kg empty weight, 2x240 hp




Fw-189 'Uhu'

- Limited night fighter use from May 1942 onward

- 4xSc-50

- 2xMg17 fixed forward firing guns, later two  Mg-151/20 fixed forward firing cannons

- Up to 2xMg-81z flexible defensive guns.

- 357 km/h, 103.9 kg/m², 3950kg empty weight, 2x459 hp




He-111 night fighter

- Flexible forward firing Mg-FF cannon with flash suppressor

- Possibly WB-81 gunpods (6xMg-81z) if photographs can be found

- Highest scoring aces against Po-2 flew this plane (14 kills, 11 kills etc.)

- Flash suppressors on engines

- 440 km/h, 137 kg/m², 8,680kg, 2x1300hp






- 1xMg-15 defensive gun

- Rarely a bomb load (after 1944 some aircraft carried bomblets under the wings ~96kg)

- 175 km/h, 48.5 kg/m², 860 kg empty weight, 240hp





Some notes and reflections:



- The German aircraft had better power-to-weight ratios than their Russian opponents

- The Fw-58, Fw-189, Ju-87D5, and He-111 all potentially outgun their opponents


- The Fi-156, Ar-66 are similar in weight to the Po-2

- The FW-58 and Hs-126 are about twice the weight

- The Fw-189 and Ju-87D5 are bigger at almost four times the weight (with the He-111 night fighters being a behemoth at about nine times the weight)


The Fw-58C:
- It has an enormous wing with a low wing-loading similar to a bi-plane! This should make it very easy to hunt with. I've tried fully extending a Bf-110's flaps, decreasing throttle to 76% and only using the Mg-17s to simulate the experience against Ju-52s and I found it extremely rewarding.

- However, it would have difficulty catching a Lisunov Li-2 at full speed. Although it might have a chance of catching a fully loaded Li-2 at low speed.


The Ju-87D5:

- Is a late aircraft (1943) and wasn't used in the observation/communication or night-fighter roles (so far as I can tell).


The Fw-189 & Hs-126:

- Has the heaviest defensive armament and one of the heaviest offensive armaments (if the A4 is modelled). The Hs-126 was more numerous early in the war but was largely replaced in 1942, however it has a higher power to weight ratio.

- One of these aircraft Fw-189 or Hs-126 would probably give the most varied game-play (followed by the Fw-58, and then the Fi-156). The use of the Fw-189 as a night fighter, observation, communications aircraft, and light bomber probably make it the most varied.


The Fi-156 and Trainer aircraft were produced in larger numbers than the dedicated combat aircraft:

>600 - Hs-126

864 - Fw-189

1,182 - Go-145 (most used as trainers)

1350 - Fw-58 (most used as trainers)

2,900 - Fi-156


Note: Firepower doesn't include explosive shells and was calculated with data from: http://users.telenet.be/Emmanuel.Gustin/fgun/fgun-pe.html In addition, the 1944 armament upgrades for the Fw-58 and Fw-189 were not included, nor were the more extensively modified He-111s. In all of these cases firepower is much higher (especially with WB-81 pods fitted)!













Edited by Avimimus
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
  • Upvote 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I voted for the Fw 58, Fw 189 and the Ar 66/ Go 145.


The reason behind this is simple:


The Arado/ Gotha are closest to the direct counterpart of the Po-2.

The Fw 189 is a long-overdue addition to the IL-2 series, as it was used as recce-bird, night-fighter and attack-aircraft. It's also rather interesting to look at and had a good reputation on both sides (well, the Soviets didn't *like* it, but you get the idea…).

The Fw 58 is very interesting, because it has never been modelled in any sim (IIRC) and it also is very versatile: Makeshift-bomber, night-fighter, trainer, liaison aircraft and light transport. I believe there was also a Fw 58 version with floats, which would make an interesting mod.


On the other side:

The Henschel and Storch are both interesting, but they're pretty much single-purpose and both don't particularily tick my box.

The Stuka is already in game and could be done by a mod or at least could be fudged into the mission (yeah, it's missing the wing-extensions of the D-5, but what the heck...).

Same for the He 111 - I'd also make the case for a Ju 88 "Zerstörer" version, which would be more interesting to me. Both the He 111 and Ju 88 are "too much airplane" for Po-2 Hunting, but they'd be nice for creating havoc behind the frontlines. No matter if train-busting, truck convoi hunting or creating some fear and loathing among soviet Transport Aviation crews.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Sure a Fw189 would be a very nice addition. It is such an amazing plane... as well as the Fi156 (which were much more produced)

However, I really believe the dev have to make the Fi156 before , because it is more easy to make, good counterpart of the Po2. 

It can do

Tank , artillery spotting , take off/land almost anywhere. 

Medevac, Special operations forces behind enemy lines.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/26/2018 at 7:42 AM, TG1_Nil said:

Sure a Fw189 would be a very nice addition. It is such an amazing plane... as well as the Fi156 (which were much more produced)

However, I really believe the dev have to make the Fi156 before , because it is more easy to make, good counterpart of the Po2. 

It can do

Tank , artillery spotting , take off/land almost anywhere. 

Medevac, Special operations forces behind enemy lines.

I feel exactly the same way. Sure a lot of people want the fw-189, but I think the fi-156 would wake a much better counterpart to the po-2 than the fw-189. The po-2 needs another slow, single engined friend imo.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...
36 minutes ago, gimpy117 said:

I just want that asymmetrical blom and voss plane (bv.141)


but only 20 were built so I know it won't happen  



we *need* a "Secret Weapons of" expansion pack with all the odd aircraft!

Edited by OrLoK
  • Upvote 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, OrLoK said:

we *need* a "Secret Weapons of" expansion pack with all the odd aircraft!

would be a fun: in the future thing. ascender for the US, P-80, P-59 meteor and vampire for the Brits 


he-162, (262 that we already have), komet, 


and maybe the feather and fargo for the soviets (if you would bend rules and go till 46-47 


and maybe some prototype attack aircraft like the arado 



  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Sad to see the Hs-126 is the least popular. I've always been interested by it. I'd love to have it and would buy it in a heartbeat.




But the Fw-189 is also an excellent choice.




I'd pretty much be happy to see any and/or all of the above to be honest. I'd agree we need more non-combat aircraft for ze Germans.

Edited by Motherbrain
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd want the storch for its multi-role capability for communications, ambulance and spotting (lamenting the lack of stretcher pods on the Po-2).

The 189 would be a big boost for the series too in its recon and night fighter/harassment roles.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...