In the late 1930s the Luftwaffe began looking for a replacement for the Bf109 series. The Fw190A series was arguably the best fighter in the Luftwaffe inventory in the early 1940s and considered by some to have been the best fighter in the world at that time, earning the name "Butcher Bird." The Fw190A quickly established dominance over its main adversary, the slower Spitfire Vb, not by out-turning the nimble RAF aircraft, but by outrunning it.

The Fw190A8's main advantages are speed, roll rate and firepower, although it suffered a serious performance degradation above 15,000 feet. The later Fw190D9 model featured an improved power plant that boosted both top speed and high-altitude performance. Generally, keep the 190 fast and execute hit-and-run tactics. Typical opponents, especially those at an energy disadvantage, cannot keep up with or climb with a well-flown Fw190. On the defensive, the Fw190 should utilize its high roll rate to maneuver out of plane from the attacker. Quickly roll the aircraft 90 to 270 degrees, pull back on the stick, and dive away from the adversary. The 190 can't turn with most adversaries, but it can more than hold its own against the Spitfire simply by keeping its energy state high and staying out of the Spitfire's reach. Don't waste energy, however. The 190 is no match for the Spitfire in the low-speed turning fight.

Focke-Wulf Fw.190A-8 (View Cockpit)

Wingspan: 34 ft. 5 in.
Length: 29 ft. 0 in.
Height: 13 ft. 0 in.
Wing Area: 197 sq. ft.
Engine: BMW 801A rated at 1,700 hp. (up to 2,100 hp. with MW-50 boost)
Fuel: 138 gal. internal
Loaded Weight: 9,750 lb.
Wing Loading: 49 lb./sq. ft.
Maximum Speed: 408 mph.
Service Ceiling: 37,400 ft.
Rate of Climb: 3,600 ft./min
Combat Radius: 165 miles
Armaments: 4 x 20mm MG-151 cannons, 2 x 13mm MG-131 machine guns
Ammunition: 250 rds/gun (20 mm: inner pair), 125 rds/gun (20 mm: outer pair), 400 rds/gun (13 mm)

Focke-Wulf Fw.190D-9 (View Cockpit)

Wingspan: 34 ft. 5 in.
Length: 33 ft. 5 in.
Height: 11 ft. 0 in.
Wing Area: 197 sq. ft.
Engine: Junkers Jumo 213A rated at 1,776 hp. (up to 2,240 hp. with MW-50 boost)
Fuel: 138 gal. internal
Loaded Weight: 9,480 lb.
Wing Loading: 48 lb./sq. ft.
Maximum Speed: 426 mph.
Service Ceiling: 39,400 ft.
Rate of Climb: 4,200 ft./min
Combat Radius: 175 miles
Armaments: 2 x 20mm MG-151 cannons, 2 x 13mm MG-131 machine guns
Ammunition: 250 rds/gun (20 mm), 400 rds/gun (13 mm)

Notes: The Focke-Wulf is an energy-based fighter (see Energy Management under Air Combat School if this concept is new to you). As such, virtually any excess weight works against the effective tactical employment of the airframe. You want to fly the Fw190 clean on every mission type except Strikes, where you should load the 500kg bomb.