The Fw 190 D-9, also known as “Long-nose Dora”, was perhaps the finest production fighter fielded by the Luftwaffe. Initially regarding with some distrust, pilots quickly found that the Dora was a superior machine to the BMW-powered versions, with improved high-altitude performance and the same fine handling. Equipped with the potent Junkers Jumo 213 A-1 engine, the aircraft was fast and lethal, giving Spitfire and Mustang pilots a very hard time of it when fuel was available.
The Focke-Wulf Ta 152 series was considered Kurt Tank’s crowning achievement with respect to the development of a high altitude reconnaissance fighter and interceptor. The Ta 152 H-1 was similar in general layout to the Fw 190D, as it used a liquid-cooled inverted V-12 for motive power. But the airframe was considerably different. The wings were much larger and the fuselage and tailplane were significantly improved and modified. In addition, the nose was further streamlined and the aircraft was fitted with a bubble-type canopy for better pilot visibility, and the cockpit was pressurized.
The Ta 152 H-1 is considered to be the definitive version of the series. It had a fuel capacity of 180 U.S. gallons total in the wings and fuselage, and was fitted with a Junkers Jumo 213 E-1 engine which used both the MW50 methanol-water injection and the GM-1 nitrous oxide injection to increase available power at both high and low altitudes. This aircraft was designed as a high-level reconnaissance fighter and interceptor. It did not have the fast roll rate of the Ta 152 C owing to the drastically increased wingspan, but the trade-off was the aircraft’s very high operational altitude — its ceiling was over 48,000 feet and it could reach a top speed of 467 miles per hour at 40,600 feet with the GM-1 boost. In this version, the rear fuel tank was deleted to accommodate the GM-1 tank and to resolve a center of gravity issue. The MW50 is located in the left inner wing tanks.