Nakajima Ki-44

Purpose: Interceptor fighter with high speed and climb rate to assist in the defense of the Japanese mainland.
Original Specifications:
  1. Climb to 13,125 ft in less than 5 minutes
  2. Reach a speed of 373 mph at that altitude
  3. Armament of two 7.7 mm and two 12.7 mm machin guns

Revisions & Types: - Major Revisions

Ki-44 - Prototype (SN 4401-4403)

  • Nakajima Ha-41, this was a 1250 hp engine, 14 cylinder, double-row radial developed to be used on bomber aircraft.
  • Fuselage had a large side area
  • The fins and rudder were mounted well to the rear of the horizontal tail surfaces
  • Wings had an area of only 161 square feet
  • Three section canopy, fron and rear fixed adn the central one sliding to the rear.
  • Fixed tail wheel and cockpit mounted radio antenna mast similar to the Ki-43
  • Single drop tank rack on the centerline of the fuselage
  • Ki-44-I(a) Army Type 2 Single-seat Fighter








    Additional Ki-44 Notes from Peter Starkings

    Dave - I am preparing an article (for Jottings) on the Ki-44 and have taken a peek at your website info. on it. I entirely agree with much of it, but (as is usual with most Japanese aircraft!) there are a few anomalies, conflicts and additional points as follows:

    Ki-44-I: I see you have followed the a/b/c variant identification given in some English publications such as by Francillon. Japanese publications (FAOW and Maru Mechanic) do not use these for the -I and Aircam/Schiffer suggest that the various modifications to the -I took place progressively thru the short production run. Retro-fitting some of these modifications would seem to make it all the more difficult and confusing to relate them to a clearly defined variant anyway!

    For example:

    Units that flew the Ki-44

    9th, 22nd, 29th, 47th, 70th, 856th, 87th and 246th Sentais

    47th Dokuritsu Dai Shijugo Chutai

    Akeno and Hitachi Army Fighter Training Schools



    Qty Description
    3 Ki-44 Prototypes (1940-41)
    7 Ki-44 pre-production aircraft (1941)
    40 Ki-44-I production aircraft (Jan-Oct 1942
    5 Ki-44-II prototypes (summer 1942)
    3 Ki-44-II pre-production aircraft (fall 1942)
    1167 Ki-440II and Ki-44-III production aircraft (Nov 1942-Dec 1944)
    1225 Total Ki-44s at Nakajima Hikoki K.K in their Ota plant


    (Drawing by Jim Perry)

    Last Revision 11/28/99