Messerschmitt BF-109: The Backbone of The Luftwaffe

The Bf-109 was one of the most heavily used fighters of WWII. The Luftwaffe (German Air force) relied heavily on this aircraft. The Messerschmitt Bf-109 was designed by Wilhelm Emil Messerschmitt & Robert Lusser. It was manufactured by Bayerische Flagzeugwerke (BFW) & Messerschmitt AG. It was designed to be a full-fledged fighter, and it did that job with excellence.

Messerschmitt Bf-109E-3 Emil
Messerschmitt Bf-109

The Bf-109 toke its first flight on the 29th of May, 1935. It was introduced into the Luftwaffe in February of 1937. The Messerschmitt Bf-109 was one of the most advanced fighters of its era. It introduced/incorporated many new innovations, such as a all-metal monocoque construction, a closed canopy, and a retractable landing gear. The Messerschmitt Bf-109 was powered by a liquid-cooled, inverted V-12 aero-engine.

The Bf-109 was originally designed to function as a interceptor (fighter), but was used in other functions later on in the war. A total of 33,984 Bf-109s were made, making it the most produced fighter aircraft in history. The top three scoring German fighter aces of WWII all used the Bf-109, and racked up a total of 928 victories (kills).

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Even though the Bf-109 was an excellent aircraft it quickly became obsolete for full on dog fighting. Beginning from the end of 1941, the Bf-109 began to be supplemented by the Focke-Wulf Fw-190. The Fw-190 was a superior aircraft in many aspects. The Bf-109 was constantly receiving upgrades, allowing it to stay in combat until the end of the war. The Bf-109 retired from the Luftwaffe on the 9th of May, 1945, with the end of the war.

If you would like more information on the Bf-109 click here.