The Junkers Ju 188 was a development of the Ju 88 series


In 1939 Junkers had the Jumo 213 engine in advanced development and, to go with it, the aircraft side of the company prepared an improved Ju 88 with a larger yet more streamlined crew compartment, more efficient pointed wings and large squarish tail. After protracted development this went into production as the Ju 188E-1, fitted with BMW 801s because the powerful Jumo was still not ready. The plant at Bernburg delivered 120 E—1s and a few radar-equipped turretless E-2s and reconnaissance F versions before, in mid-1943, finally getting into production with the A-1 version. Leipzig/Mockau built the A~2 with flame-damped exhaust for night operations and the A-3 torpedo bomber. The D was a fast reconnaissance aircraft, and the Ju 188S was a family of high-speed machines, for various duties, capable of up to 435mph (696km/h) Numerous other versions, some with a remotely controlled twin MG 131 tail turret, led to the even faster and higher flying Ju 388 family All these aircraft, and the even greater number of stillborn projects, were evidence of the increasingly urgent need to make up for the absence of properly conceived new designs by wringing the utmost development out of the obsolescent types with which the Luftwaffe had started the war.

In the summer of 1944 the 188R-0 series was tested as a possible future night fighter, but main production in this category continued with the outstanding Ju 88G—series (which in fact were hard to beat). The only area where by 1944 the Ju 188 appeared to have a future was in high—altitude missions. because failure of the Bomber B programme (Ju 288 and Fw 191 especially) had led to something like a procurement crisis in the Luftwaffe which was solved only by eventually abandoning all aircraft programmes except Jets and fighters. The high-flying Ju 388J, K and L were paralleled by the Ju 188S and T. In which armament was eliminated in favour of extra speed and height. The streamlined 1883 bomber. With very highly rated Jumo 213E-1 engines. reached 426mph (685km/h) at 37.73Ofl (11.500m), while the 188R reconnaissance aircraft reached 435mph But by mid-1944 most programmes were in chaos, and after a few S and R had come off the line the rest were turned into low—level 188S-1/U close-support aircraft with 50mm BK-5 cannon. Despite its excellent qualities. and the esteem in which it was held by it's crews. the 188 never served in large numbers nor made any impact on the war In 1945—46 12 were assembled by SNCASE in France, and used with others (mainly E and F models) by the French Aeronavale as hacks and testbeds. The 188 was an outstanding machine, but the Luftwaffe received fewer than 1,100 of them.[1]


  • Origin: Junkers Flugzeug und Motorenwerke AG, with subcontract manufacture of parts by various French companies
  • Type: Five—seat bomber (D—Z, reconnaissance)
  • Engines: (Ju 188A) two 1.776hp Junkers Jumo 213A 12-cylinder inverted-vee liquid cooled: (Ju 188D) same as A. (Ju 188E) two 1,700hp BMW 801G-2 18-cylinder two row radials.
  • Dimensions: Span 72ft Zin (2Zm); length 49ft 1in (14.96m); height 16ft lin (4.9m)
  • Weights: Empty (188E—1) 21,825lb (9900kg). loaded (188A and D) 33,730lb (15,300kg); (188E-1) 31,967lb (14,500kg)
  • Performance: Maximum speed (188A) 325mph (420km/h) at 20,500ft (6,25Om). (188D) 350mph (560km/h) at 27,000ft (8,235m). (188E) 315mph (494l<m/h) at 19,685ft (6000m), service ceiling (188A) 33,000ft (10.060m). (188D) 36,090ft (11,000m); (188E) 31,170 ft (9,500m); range with 3,300lb (1,500kg) bomb load (188A and E) 1.550 miles (248Okm),
  • Armament: (A, D—1 and E—1) one 2O mm MG 151/Z0 cannon in nose, one MG 131 in dorsal turret. one 13mm MG 131 manually aimed at rear dorsal position and one MG 131 or twin 7.92mm MG 81 manually aimed at rear ventral position. 6,614lb (3,000kg) bombs internally or two 2,200lb (1,000kg) torpedoes under inner wings.
  • History: First flight (Ju 88B—O) early 1940; (Ju 88V27) September 1941. (Ju 188V1) December 1941, (Ju 188E-1) March 1942.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Wood, Tony and Bill Gunston. Hitler's Luftwaffe. Salamander Books. 1997. ISBN 0 86101 935 0 Page 213