In War Thunder’s upcoming major update 1.71 “New E.R.A”, pilots will have the chance to try out the worthy successor to the legendary D3A carrier dive bomber. Welcome two versions of Japan’s best late-war naval dive bomber – the D4Y Suisei!
The D4Y series of aircraft were developed by the Japanese in the late 1930s as a replacement for the aging D3A naval dive bomber. Although the initial plan was to replace the legendary D3A with the Heinkel He-118, this option was quickly discarded once the German candidate proved itself unsuitable. Once Japanese engineers acquired license copies of the German DB601A engine, they started working on their own design, taking inspiration from the failed German design. The new aircraft, designated D4Y Suisei first took flight in December 1940 and subsequently entered serial production after successfully passing testing in 1942.
Once it entered service, the D4Y served the Imperial Japanese Navy faithfully until the war’s conclusion, being used in many different roles, from its intended dive bomber role all the way to a reconnaissance aircraft and even night fighter. Over 2,000 D4Ys, spanning across several modifications, were constructed between 1942-1945.
The D4Y will be added to War Thunder in two modifications – The D4Y2 and D4Y3. The D4Y2 represents one of the early modifications, outfitted with a Japanese license-built version of the Daimler-Benz DB601A inline engine. However, as the crews and maintenance teams soon found out, this engine proved to be unreliable and difficult to service. Thus, later modifications, such as the D4Y3, were equipped with a tried and tested Mitsubishi radial engine, solving the reliability issues.
Compared to its predecessor, the D3A, the D4Ys are able to carry slightly bigger payloads, offering their pilots a choice between various different bomb calibers as well as rockets, whilst still retaining the ability to deliver the payload with deadly precision. Once the bombs have been dropped, pilots can either choose to return to base, or continue putting pressure on the enemy by utilizing the two nose-mounted low caliber machine guns to perform strafing runs against lightly armoured vehicles.
Keep your eyes peeled for two new additions coming to the Japanese air forces research tree, along with others, in the next major update 1.71 “New E.R.A”! Stay tuned!