The P-47 Thunderbolt is a legendary World War II fighter aircraft used by the Allied air force. This single-seat long wing-fighter eventually earned a reputation for being a solid fighter that can rip apart any target.
The P-47 Thunderbolt featured a wingspan of 41.9 feet, a length of 36.2 feet, a height of 14.7 feet, and an overall wing area of 299 square feet.
The aircraft was powered by one Pratt and Whitney R 2859 Double Wasp 18-Cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine.
The aircraft’s true power comes from its armament which is extremely destructive for a fighter aircraft.
Its eight high-caliber machine guns made it one of the few American aircraft to carry almost twice the firepower of a fighter.
Lethal Opponent to Hostile Air Forces
Its combined rate of fire and damage made the Thunderbolt an extremely lethal opponent. In mere seconds, the aircraft can pour more than 200 rounds of ammunition into a target, making its machine gun battery a force to be reckoned with. A few bursts are more than enough to destroy enemy hospital airfields, barracks, ammunition, and supply deposits.
When it comes to engaging enemy aircraft in dogfights, a single precise burst is more than enough to take the target down, especially Japanese aircraft that lack proper armor.
Notable American Aces
By the time the war ended, the P-47 flew more than 740,000 sorties and claimed over 3,700 hits.
Several American aces reached legendary status aboard the Thunderbolt, such as Captain Robert S. Johnson, Lieutenant Colonel Francis Gabreski, and Colonel Hubert Zemke.