Kawasaki Ki-96

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Role Twin engine heavy fighter
National origin Japan
Manufacturer Kawasaki Kōkūki Kōgyō K.K.
First flight September 1943
Number built 3
Developed from Kawasaki Ki-45
Developed into Kawasaki Ki-102

The Kawasaki Ki-96 was a Japanese single seat, twin-engine heavy fighter of World War II. It was intended to replace the Kawasaki Ki-45s of the Imperial Japanese Army Air Service. However, it was not adopted and only three prototypes were built.

Design and development[edit]

The success of the Kawasaki Ki-45 led Kawasaki to start development of an evolved version, on Kawasaki's own authority, in August 1942.[1] Like the Ki-45, the proposed design was a two-seat, twin-engine fighter, but larger and using more powerful engines. In December 1942 the Koku Hombu (Imperial Japanese Army Aviation Bureau) showed interest, but asked Kawasaki to complete the aircraft as single-seat fighters.[1] The first prototype, which was converted while being produced and which retained the larger cockpit canopy intended for the two-seater, flew in September 1943. The two remaining prototypes were built from the start as single-seaters and were fitted with a smaller canopy.[2]

Despite demonstrating performance exceeding estimates and excellent handling, the Army's requirements had changed back to a two-seat fighter,[3] so further development of the Ki-96 was stopped. The wings and tail unit of the Ki-96 would however form part of the structure of the Ki-102 two-seat fighter.[3][4]

Specifications (Kawasaki Ki-96)[edit]

Data from War Planes of the Second World War - Fighters - Vol. 3;[5] WW2 Aircraft Fact Files: Japanese Army Fighters, Part 1;[4] Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War[3]

General characteristics



See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era



  1. ^ a b Green and Swanborough 1976, p. 37.
  2. ^ Francillon 1979, p. 127.
  3. ^ a b c Francillon 1979, p. 128.
  4. ^ a b Green and Swanborough 1976, p. 38.
  5. ^ Green 1961, p. 28.


  • Francillon, Ph.D., René J. Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War. London: Putnam & Company Ltd., 1970 (2nd edition 1979). ISBN 0-370-30251-6.
  • Green, William. Warplanes of the Second World War, Volume Three: Fighters. London: Macdonald & Co. (Publishers) Ltd., 1961 (seventh impression 1973). ISBN 0-356-01447-9.
  • Green, William and Swanborough, Gordon. WW2 Aircraft Fact Files: Japanese Army Fighters, Part 1. London: Macdonald and Jane's, 1976. ISBN 0-356-08224-5.

External links[edit]