Large numbers of aircraft were captured by opposing forces during the Second World War and in some cases these aircraft were airworthy allowing for the captor to assess it’s performance and develop countermeasures. One such aircraft was Spitfire Vb EN830/NX-X which crashed in German-occupied Jersey having been hit by flak over France on November 18th 1942. It’s pilot, Pilot Officer (Sous Lt.) Bernard Scheidhauer of the Free French Air Force, crash landed the aircraft relatively intact in a turnip field and both he and his aircraft were transported back to Germany where he would later be shot for his part in a mass break out of allied PoWs.
With the aircraft repaired the Germans went about assessing it and it’s Merlin 45 engine comparing it to previous captured Spitfire marks and of course to their own Bf109 and Fw190 fighter aircraft…
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