D.521

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D.521

The D.521 was a modified variant of the French Dewoitine D.520 which featured a Rolls Royce Merlin III engine and slight armament changes. Only one model was ever produced.

The MSI promotional picture for the D.521

A single-seat monoplane fighter with an all-metal construction, closed cockpit and retractable landing gear with a tail wheel. Designed by the SNCAM (Societe Nationale des constructions aeronautiques du Midi) company. The developmental prototype of the Dewoitine D.520-01 fighter took its maiden flight on 2 October 1938. Series production began at the SNCAM (later SNCASE) plant in Toulouse.

While perfecting the series-produced Dewoitine D.520 fighters, designers also worked to create new models of the same plane. In November 1939, work began on creating the Dewoitine D.521 model, equipped with the British liquid-cooled V12 Rolls-Royce Merlin Mk.III engine with a rated output of 1,030 hp. It was suggested that a fighter fitted with this engine could reach a maximum horizontal speed of 570 km/h. Since an engine-mounted cannon could not be installed on the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine, two Hispano-Suiza H.S.404 cannons were mounted on the wings instead. This meant that all the Dewoitine D.521's weaponry was mounted on the wings, and consisted of two 20 mm Hispano-Suiza HS.404 drum magazine cannons with 60 shells each and four 7.5 mm Chatellerault MAC 1934 machine guns with 675 rounds each.

Note that precise information (primarily photographs) on the practical configuration of the Dewoitine D.521's Hispano-Suiza wing-mounted cannons is not available. For this reason, we can only make educated guesses about the fighter's armament structure.

One of the early series-produced Dewoitine D.520 fighters was selected to be adapted as the Dewoitine D.521-01 prototype. Its maiden flight took place on 9 February 1940. It had an improved climbing rate, but the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine was significantly heavier than the Hispano-Suiza 12Y installed on the series-produced planes, and this caused problems with the plane's center of gravity. Testing continued until March 1940. On the whole, the new plane failed to exceed the performance of the series-produced Dewoitine D.520s, and the Dewoitine D.521 project was closed.

The main purpose, usage and tactics recommendations

The D.521 is essentially a slightly improved version of the D.520. This is also reflected in it's battle rating in Arcade which stands at 3.7 rather than the 3.3 on the D.520, however in Realistic and Simulator Battles, it is in fact at 2.7 whilst the D.520 is at 3.0 respectively. It has a somewhat improved engine (Rolls-Royce Merlin III) which constitutes the one major change. It does however have a slightly worse turn and climb rate which may be due to the added weight of said engine. At either rate, tactically, it is advised that you have good knowledge of the various aircraft's you will face as it does not excel at any one thing. By applying situational awareness and a degree of caution to your approach, you may find yourself to be quite successful with this machine, but regardless of if you approach this in Arcade or Realistic battles, you need to have a good idea about the airplanes you are likely to face in the battle rating of this aircraft.

Pros and cons of the plane

Pros

  • 5 Guns. One 20mm 404 Hispano Cannon near the nose of the aircraft and 4 7.5mm MAC 1934 machine guns in the wings
  • Plenty of ammo for the machine-guns
  • Very incendiary ammunition for its tracer ammunition.
  • Powerful nose mounted 20mm cannon
  • Good all round low tier fighter aircraft

Cons

  • Neither very maneuverable or very fast
  • Very little ammo for the 20mm cannon. Limited to 60 bullets
  • Relatively poor rate of climb

Armament

  • 1x 20mm 404 Hispano cannon in the nose, 60 shells
  • 4x 7.5mm MAC 1934 machine guns in the wings. 675rpg = 2700 total

History of creation and combat usage

Only one prototype was ever built.

Screenshots and fan art

Skins and camouflages for the D.520 and D.521 from live.warthunder

The "Vive La Liberate!" event in which the D.521 was first featured.

Additional information (links)

The D.521 was first made available in the "Vive la Liberté!" competition with MSI as a reward for the winning participants: http://warthunder.com/en/news/172/current/

After this, it was made available in several MSI hardware packages as an excursive gift plane and could only be obtained this way. It became a very sought after aircraft within the community and was a commonly requested event aircraft.

The aircraft was then made available in October of 2014 to all players as a reward aircraft for completing missions and participating in the "First Flight of Dewoitine D.520" event: http://warthunder.com/en/news/876-Special-First-Flight-of-Dewoitine-D520-en

On July 17th 2015; This plane has been made available, during the special "Bastille Day" event. You just have to complete, the special objectives of the event; to get this plane: http://warthunder.com/en/news/3222-special-bastille-day-en

d_521.png
Title D.521
Country Great Britain
Rank 2
Rating 2.7
Max altitude 12000 m
Max speed 568.8 km/h on altitude 6500 m
Turn time 21 s
Take on distance 310 m
Climb time 415 s to altitude 5000 m
Climb rate 12.04 m/s
Time for free repair 11 h 8 m
Max repair cost 5150 s.l.
Cost 38000 s.l.

*Without modifications