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Academy 1/48 IL2m3 Berlin 1945 Fighter Kit

Academy 1/48 IL2m3 Berlin 1945 Fighter Kit


$33.60 $42.00

The Ilyushin IL-2 Sturmovik, particularly the IL-2m3 variant (also known as IL-2 Type 3M), stands as one of the most significant and produced combat aircraft of World War II. This Soviet ground-attack aircraft earned a legendary reputation for its durability and effectiveness in supporting Red Army operations against Axis forces. The IL-2m3 was a development of the original IL-2 design, incorporating several improvements that enhanced its performance and survivability on the battlefield. Here is a detailed report on the IL-2m3 Sturmovik.

Development and Operational History

The IL-2 Sturmovik was designed by Sergei Ilyushin and first flew in 1939, with production starting in 1941. It quickly became a crucial tool in the Soviet Union's war effort, known for its ability to deliver punishing blows against ground targets while withstanding significant amounts of damage. The IL-2m3 variant emerged as a response to the need for better performance and improved crew protection. Introduced in late 1942, this version featured a more powerful engine and reinforced armor plating, among other enhancements. Its role in the war was so pivotal that Joseph Stalin famously demanded its production in large quantities, emphasizing its importance to the Soviet military.


General Characteristics

  • Type: Two-seat ground-attack aircraft
  • Crew: 2 (pilot and rear gunner)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Mikulin AM-38F liquid-cooled V-12 engine, producing up to 1,720 hp.
  • Wingspan: 14.6 m (47 ft 11 in)
  • Length: 11.6 m (38 ft 1 in)
  • Height: 4.2 m (13 ft 9 in)
  • Wing Area: 38.5 m² (414 sq ft)


  • Maximum Speed: Approximately 414 km/h (257 mph) at sea level
  • Range: 720 km (447 miles) with maximum fuel
  • Service Ceiling: 5,500 m (18,045 ft)
  • Rate of Climb: 9.8 m/s (1,930 ft/min)


  • Guns: 2 × 23 mm VYa-23 cannons, up to 4 × 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns for ground targets, and 1 × 12.7 mm Berezin UBT machine gun for rear defense.
  • Bombs: Up to 600 kg (1,320 lbs) of bombs under wings and fuselage.
  • Rockets: RS-82 or RS-132 rockets.

Operational Use

The IL-2m3 Sturmovik was employed extensively on the Eastern Front, from the Battle of Stalingrad to the final assault on Berlin. Its primary role was close air support for Soviet ground forces, attacking German fortifications, tanks, and troop concentrations. The IL-2m3's ability to absorb damage and continue flying earned it the nickname "Flying Tank" among Soviet troops and "Black Death" by German soldiers. Despite heavy losses due to its low-altitude attack profiles, the IL-2m3 was instrumental in blunting German offensives and supporting Soviet counterattacks.


The Ilyushin IL-2m3 Sturmovik is remembered as one of World War II's most effective ground-attack aircraft. Over 36,000 IL-2s were produced during the war, making it the most-produced military aircraft design at the time. Its contribution to the Soviet war effort was invaluable, providing critical support that helped turn the tide on the Eastern Front. Today, the IL-2 Sturmovik is honored in Russia and around the world as a symbol of Soviet resilience and military ingenuity. Its legacy is preserved in museums and monuments, and by continuing its name in the IL-2 Sturmovik series of flight simulation video games, which keep its memory alive for new generations.

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