Mitsubishi Ki.15 Type 97 ("Babs")
Mitsubishi C5M Type 98 ("Babs")

Click HERE and HERE to see a more detailed 3-view of the Babs

Click HERE to see color drawings of the Babs

The army's Mitsubishi Ki-15 (and its counterpart in the navy, the C5M) became the most popular Japanese reconnaissance plane during the period just before World War II and during the early stages of the war itself. The project was begun in the summer of 1935 at the request of army technical  authorities, with the first prototype appearing in May of 1936. The new reconnaissance plane made its operational debut during the second Sino-Japanese war. It proved to be an excellent plane and was hard to intercept. Because of its high performance, the plane attracted the interest of naval authorities, who at the time did not have modern reconnaissance planese. In 1938 the navy ordered a number of these aircraft for its own use, to be designated as C5Ms. However, only about 50 of the total 489 examples made of this type were to be navy C5Ms, with the vast majority used as army Ki-15s. The Ki-15s and C5Ms (which the Allies gave the codename of "Babs") remained on front-line duty throughout 1942. Then they were gradually withdrawn and reassigned to training and liaison duty.

Mitsubishi Ki-15

Type:           Command / Land Reconnaissance 
Service: 	JNAF and JAAF
Crew:           Pilot and observer
Armament:       one flexible rear-firing 7.7mm Type 92 machine gun
Reference: 	Francillon: 154, Mondey: 206

        Length:         28' 6.5" (8.7 m)
        Height:         11' 0" (3.35 m)
        Wingspan:       39' 4.5" (12.00 m)
        Wing area:      219.16 sq. ft (20.36 sq. m)
        Empty Weight:   3086 lbs (1400 kg)
        Max Weight:     5071 lbs (2300 kg)

        No. of Engines: 1
        Powerplant:     Nakajima Ha-8 9-cylinder radial
        Horsepower:     640 hp

        Range:          1491 miles (2400 km)
        Cruise Speed:   199 mph (320 km/hr)
        Max Speed:      298 mph (480 km/hr)
        Climb to/in:    16405 ft (5000 m) in 8 min 27 sec
        Ceiling:        37400 ft (11400 m)
Production:		approximately 489 Ki-15s and C5Ms

Additional information on this aircraft can be found at Wikipedia HERE.

For a very nice scale color drawing of this aircraft, see

Additional color schemes for this aircraft can be found here and here.

(go to Mitsubishi page)

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