Mitsubishi 1MF2 Hayabusa
|FIGHTER||Virtual Aircraft Museum / Japan / Mitsubishi|
In March 1927, the Imperial Army ordered Kawasaki, Nakajima and Mitsubishi to investigate design of a fighter on a competitive basis to replace the ageing Ko-4 (Nieuport-Delage NiD 29). Designed by Nobushiro Nakata assisted by Jiro Horikoshi and Jiro Tanaka, the Mitsubishi contender in the contest, the 1MF2 Hayabusa (Peregrine Falcon), was of advanced concept, being a parasol monoplane without wire bracing, emphasis being placed on ease of assembly and disassembly. Powered by a 600hp Mitsubishi Hispano-Suiza water-cooled V-12 engine, the first prototype Hayabusa was completed in May 1928. After manufacturer's flight testing at Kagamigahara, both first and second prototypes were transferred to the Tokorozawa Army test centre where the Hayabusa recorded a maximum speed of 270km/h at 3000m, but during a diving test the Mitsubishi fighter broke up in the air after exceeding 400km/h. The Army suspended evaluation of the contending types, cancelling the programme and testing the other prototypes to destruction. The Hayabusa was of mixed construction with wooden wing and metal fuselage, its armament being two 7.7mm guns.