The D.501 is a rank I French fighter with a battle rating of 1.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.73 "Vive la France".
The D.501 is an all-metal mono-wing aircraft with an open cockpit and fixed landing gear. Built in the mid 1930’s, it was one of the main French fighter aircraft until it was replaced by Morane-Saulnier M.S.406 aircraft in 1939. When playing SB (or AB and RB in cockpit view) this aircraft offers excellent visibility, only limited by the position of the wings. This aircraft has 600 rounds of ammunition between two machine guns and 60 rounds of 20 mm ammunition. This aircraft can really do some damage when gun convergence is set between 250 and 350 meters.
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 5,000 m)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 320||< 330||< 360||> 280|
|Optimal altitude||100% Engine power||WEP Engine power|
|3,800 m||690 hp||N/A|
Survivability and armour
- 3 mm Steel plate behind engine
- 3 mm Steel plate on pilot's seat
- Open cockpit
- Fuel tanks are not self-sealing (1 beneath pilot's feet, in in each wing)
Modifications and economy
The D.501 is armed with:
- 1 x 20 mm Hispano 404 cannon, nose-mounted (60 rpg)
- 2 x 7.5 mm MAC 1934 machine guns, wing-mounted (300 rpg = 600 total)
The single Hispano 404 cannon is mounted centrally in the fuselage while each of the MAC 1934 machine guns are mounted on the underside of the wing. Each of the machine guns are armed with the same amount of ammunition, which means that they will fire with each other until empty. On the other hand, the cannon only has 60 rounds of ammunition and if fired at the same time and at the same rate as the machine guns, it will run out of ammo first.
Usage in battles
The D.501 is a French fighter which can be utilized for air-to-air combat or ground attack on light ground units (armoured vehicles and mobile AAA units). Good speed and manoeuvrability allows this aircraft to use its rudder, ailerons and flaps to roll, turn and manoeuvre out of tight spots. When going after ground units, this aircraft can make an attack and then loop up and back over down onto remaining targets with ease. The 20 mm cannon adds an extra punch which many early aircraft do not have and can be used to great effect on other aircraft, including larger bombers.
Manual Engine Control
|Not controllable|| Not controllable
Not auto controlled
| Not controllable
Not auto controlled
Not auto controlled
|Combined|| Not controllable
Pros and cons
- Strong firepower of the 20mm cannon is quite devastating for fragile planes around 1.3
- Nose-centered guns are easy to aim in simulator
- Dual role of aircraft fighter and ground attacker
- Agile and effective when turning and looping especially when utilizing the rudder
- Great over-the-nose visibility allowing easy aiming in a simulator dogfight
- Easy to control at low speeds meaning forgiving landing characteristics for realistic / simulator
- Open cockpit allows player to hear outside sounds easily, which is beneficial in noticing nearby enemies
- Extremely simple to land (fixed landing gear, and no flaps)
- Open cockpit (vulnerable to pilot sniping). No rear protection at all for the pilot
- Low ammo count of only 60 rounds is very unfriendly to beginners / bad aimers
- Critical components clustered towards front of aircraft
- Fixed landing gear creates more drag
- No flap controls limiting its turning potential
- Very light, meaning that it will flip over with continuous braking
The D.500 series of aircraft were developed in response to the C1 specification issued by the French Air Ministry in 1930. The specification mostly intended to replace France’s inventory of old WW1 and 1920 era aircraft with more modern designs. Famous aircraft designer Émile Dewoitine, submitted his D.500 design and almost immediately caught the attention of the Air Ministry’s officials. Shortly after the D.500 had its maiden flight in 1932, an order for 60 aircraft was placed in 1933, 10 of which were for the D.501. In essence, the D.501 was just a subvariant of the D.500. The two major differences lie in the powerplant and armament. Namely, the D.500 used a Hispano-Suiza 12Xbrs engine, whilst the D.501 was equipped with a 12Xcrs engine, that allowed for the installation of a 20mm cannon through the propellor hub. This change also caused the removal of the two nose-mounted machine guns from the original layout, found on the D.500. Whilst a single 20mm cannon, paired with a couple machine guns may seem like a laughable setup today, the sheer presence of an autocannon on an aircraft back then was deemed almost as a luxury.
By the outbreak of WW2, aircraft of the D.500 series were more than outdated by machines of other nations, including some of the late 1930s French aircraft, such as the MS.406. The machines rarely saw front line use, instead being relegated to reserve units of the French Air Force and to trainer roles. However, a small number of aircraft did see limited action during the Spanish Civil War, likely being the only recorded combat use of the aircraft. Just under 400 aircraft of the D.500 series were manufactured, around 160 of which were D.501s.
Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the series of the aircraft;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:
- topic on the official game forum;
- encyclopedia page on the aircraft;
- other literature.
|Fighters||D.371 · D.371 H.S.9 · D.373|
|D.500 · D.501 · Pallier's D.510|
|Export||▄D.520 · ▄D.521|
|Dewoitine||D.371 · D.371 H.S.9 · D.373 · D.500 · D.501 · Pallier's D.510 · D.520|
|Morane-Saulnier||M.S.405C1 · M.S.406C1 · M.S.410|
|Bloch||M.B.152C1 · M.B.157|
|American||H-75A-1 · H-75A-4 · ▄P-40F-5 Lafayette · ▄P-47D-22 RE · ▄P-63C-5 · ▄F6F-5 · ▄F6F-5N · F4U-7 · ▄F8F-1B|
|Other countries||▄Yak-3 · Challe's ▄Yak-9T · NC.900|