Yokosuka D4Y 'Judy'
Well-proportioned and purposeful in appearance, the Yokosuka D4Y possessed an excellent performance and owed much of its concept to the German He 118, for whose manufacturing rights Japan negotiated in 1938. Designed as a fast carrier-based attack bomber and powered by an imported Daimler-Benz DB 600G engine, the D4Y1 was first flown in December 1941; D4Y1-C reconnaissance aircraft were ordered into production at Aichi's Nagoya plant, the first of 660 aircraft being completed in the late spring of 1942. The first service aircraft were lost when the Soryu was sunk at Midway. Named Suisei (comet) in service and codenamed 'Judy' by the Allies, many D4Yls were completed as dive-bombers, and 174 Suiseis of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Koku Sentais were embarked in nine carriers before the
Battle of the Philippine Sea. However, they were intercepted by American carriers, and suffered heavy casualties without achieving any success.
A new version with 1044-kW (1,400-hp) Aichi Atsuta 32 engine appeared in 1944 as the D4Y2 but, in the interests of preserving high performance, nothing was done to introduce armour protection for crew or fuel tanks, and the sole improvement in gun armament was
the inclusion of a 13.2-mm (0.52-in) trainable gun (replacing the previous 7.92-mm/0.31-m gun) in the rear cockpit. This version suffered heavily in the battle for the Philippines. Problems of reliability with the Atsuta (DB 601) engine led to adoption of a Kinsei 62 radial in the D4Y3, and this engine was retained in the D4Y4 which was developed in 1945 as a single-seat suicide dive-bomber.
Specification Yokosuka D4Y3'Judy'
Type: two-seat carrierborne divebomber
Powerplant: one 1163.3-kW(l,560-hp) Mitsubishi MK8P Kinsei 62 radial piston engine
Performance: maximum speed 75 km/h (357 mph) at 6050 m (19,849 ft); climb to 3000 m (9,843 ft) 4.55 minutes;
service ceiling 10500 m (34,449 ft); range 1520 km (944 miles)
Weights: empty 2501 kg (5,514 lb); maximum take-off 4657 kg (10.267 lb)
Dimensions: span 11.50 m (37 ft.75 in); length 10.22 m (33 ft 6.4 in); height 3.74 m (12 ft 3.2 in); wing area 23.60m2 (254.04 sq ft)
Armament: two fixed forward-firing 7.7-mm (0.303-in) Type 97 machineguns in nose
and one 13,1-mm (0.5-in) Type 2 trainable gun in rear cockpit, plus a maximum bombload of 560 kg (1,235 lb)