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Kawasaki Ki-45 Kai Hei Toryu (Dragon Slayer)


December 1, 2020

Photo courtesy of Tom Lymburn

Kawasaki Ki-45 Kai Hei Toryu (Dragon Slayer)

In 1918, Kawasaki heavy industries established an aircraft and engine division. Between the wars, it produced license versions of the French Salmson 2A2 recon biplane and the Dornier Wal flying boat. Richard Vogt, later of Blohm und Voss, also designed aircraft for the Japanese Army. During WWII, Kawasaki was known for the Ki-61 fighter, the Ki-48 bomber, the Ki-56, a license-built version of the Lockheed 14 transport, and the Ki-45 Toryu twin engine fighter.

Intrigued by the concept of a twin-engine fighter like the Messerschmitt Bf-110, Kawasaki proposed the Ki-45. Although the prototype...

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