The Sa'ar was a later development of the Sambad (Super Mystere B2). The reason for its development was the weak, fuel-hungry engine of the Super Mystere, the Atar 101G-3 engine. Not only that, but it was also prone to mechanical failures. In 1967, it was proposed to use the engine of the A-4H in the Super Mystere. The Pratt & Whitney J52-P-8A engine was lighter, 25% more powerful, more reliable, and less fuel-hungry, but it had no afterburner. The new aircraft featured more ground ordnance capabilities, Shafrir 2 missiles, and a better range, at the cost of no longer being considered an interceptor due to the loss of its afterburner. By 1973, the upgrade program was completed, and all 26 Super Mysteres in the IAF were upgraded to the Sa'ar model.
Introduced in Update "Winged Lions", the Sa'ar is played in a very unique way in battles. It has the engine of the A-4 Skyhawk and also some of its weakness. It has a decent top speed for a subsonic fighter, but its acceleration and poor energy retention don't make the Sa'ar a frontline fighter. While it can go for bases, it's not recommended since equipping ground ordnance hampers flight performance severely and would become easy prey for supersonic interceptors like the MiG-19 and MiG-21. Instead, as a support fighter, the Sa'ar can have very good results, because at its BR most jets have no countermeasures, and the Shafrir 2 is a relatively powerful missile with similar characteristics to the AIM-9D.
The aircraft features a rather weak engine with a low acceleration and bad energy retention. It is greatly manoeuvrable at all speeds with little to average compression at higher speeds.
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 0 m - sea level)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear||Drogue chute|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 600||< 610||< 590||N/A|
|Engine name||Number||Wing loading (full fuel)|
|Pratt & Whitney J52-P-8A||1||6,948 kg||257 kg/m2|
|Engine characteristics||Mass with fuel (no weapons load)|| Max Takeoff|
|Weight (each)||Type||9m fuel||20m fuel||30m fuel||32m fuel|
|950 kg||Axial-flow turbojet||7,557 kg||8,191 kg||8,812 kg||8,979 kg||11,645 kg|
|Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (100%)|
|Condition||100%||WEP||9m fuel||20m fuel||30m fuel||32m fuel||MTOW|
|Optimal|| 3,754 kgf
Survivability and armour
The aircraft features 14 mm steel plates in front of the instrument panel and behind the pilot as well as 40 mm of bulletproof glass angled at 61 degrees, which can save the pilot from some fragmentation. Getting shot most times will result in a fire due to the self-sealing fuel tanks being everywhere on your aircraft, from the center of the fuselage all the way to your wingtips. The engine is also quite large and will easily get shot and set on fire.
Modifications and economy
|CCIP (Guns)||CCIP (Rockets)||CCIP (Bombs)||CCRP (Bombs)|
The Sa'ar is armed with:
- 2 x 30 mm DEFA 552 cannons, chin-mounted (150 rpg = 300 total)
The Sa'ar can be outfitted with the following ordnance:
|100/50 kg G.P. bombs||4||4||1||1||4||4|
|250 lb LDGP Mk 81 bombs||2||2||1||1||2||2|
|250/50 kg G.P. bombs||1||1||1||1|
|360/50 kg G.P. bombs||1||1||1||1|
|500 lb LDGP Mk 82 bombs||2||2||2||2|
|500/50 kg G.P. bombs||1||1||1||1|
|Mk.2 incendiary bombs||1||1||1||1|
|FFAR Mighty Mouse rockets||14, 38||14, 19||7||7||14, 19||14, 38|
|Zuni Mk32 Mod 0 ATAP rockets||8||8||8||8|
|Shafrir 2 missiles||1||1|
|Default weapon presets|
Usage in battles
In Air RB, this aircraft can be used with minimum fuel load and the 2 x Shafrir 2 loadout , firing your amazing missiles at others that are unaware of you and using your manoeuvrability to engage in 1-vs-1 dogfights. Make sure no other enemies are around since you will get slow after the first few turns.
In Ground RB, this aircraft can greatly utilize its CCIP picking the 2 x Shafrir 2 + 16 x 100 kg bombs, dropping a single pair accurately on each target and ensuring a destruction with their large TNT explosive mass. This aircraft also features Zuni and Mighty Mouse rockets but due to a lack of CCIP, scoring accurate hits will be harder.
It is worth mentioning that this aircraft also has much bigger bombs (100 kg, 250 lb, 250 kg, 360 kg and 500 kg) that can be used both in Air RB to bomb bases and in Ground RB, but they significantly slow your plane down. These heavier bombs also grant the ability to achieve up to 8 drops, which can help secure 8 or more destructions in Ground RB.
Despite lacking engine thrust, it features decent manoeuvrability and armament options where if you get used to this vehicle, you can see great results in all gamemodes.
Pros and cons
- Excellent Shafrir 2 air-to-air missiles with long range and good turning ability
- Wide variety of air-to-ground ordnance
- Decent manoeuvrability
- CCIP and CCRP for bombs
- Weak engine; lacks the afterburner the previous Sambad has
- Poor survivability
- Poor energy retention
- Low muzzle velocity for the DEFA cannons
The Sa'ar was a further development of the Super Mystere B2 Sambad by Israel. Its development can be traced back to 1967 when it was proposed to use the Pratt & Whitney J52-P-8A engine in Super Mysteres because of their unreliable engine. The engine used in the Super Mystere, was the Atar 101G-3. This engine had an afterburner and allowed the Super Mystere to reach supersonic speeds. However this came at the cost of reliability, elevated fuel consumption and frequent mechanical issues, not to mention that it was a very heavy engine, and when not using the afterburner it was also very weak. The upgrade was also motivated by the French embargo imposed over Israel in 1967, this embargo affected the acquiring of parts and other equipment needed to maintain the Atar 101G-3 engine.
In 1969, field tests were carried with a modified Super Mystere using the J52-P8A. It was found that the engine was lighter, less fuel hungry and 25% more powerful. Thus the Sa'ar was capable of carrying more ground ordnance, and as such, it was equipped with a ballistics computer for bombs, it also had more hardpoints and Shafrir 2 AAMs for air-to-air combat. Soon, the upgrade for all the Super Mystere fleet (26 units) of the IAF was approved and work began by Israel Aircraft Industries at Lod Airport. The first production units were handed to the IAF in 1969 and by early 1973, all 26 Super Mysteres were upgraded to the Sa'ar model.
During the Yom Kippur War, the Sa'ars of the 105 Squadron of the IAF conducted several sorties to help in the war effort. This aircraft participated on both the Egyptian and Syrian fronts. On the Syrian front, they were used to attack Syrian armour in the Golan Heights. Against the Egyptians, they were both used for air cover and ground attacks, but were primarily used against the Egyptian Third Army crossing the Suez Canal. Around 150 tanks were destroyed by the Sa'ar in a span of days, alongside artillery units, command posts, logistic centres and other armoured vehicles. After fighting in Egypt, the Sa'ar was relocated to Syria, where they were used to help in air raids deep in the country. When the IDF crossed the Suez canal, the Sa'ar was also there providing CAS capabilities and it participated in all major offensives of the war. By the end, the Sa'ars had flown 887 total sorties with 6 losses.
The Sa'ar was later replaced by the F-4 Phantom and 12 Sa'ars were sold to Honduras in 1976, where they remained in service until 1996.
- Related development
|Fighters||M.B.152C1 · M.B.157|
|Bombers||M.B.162 · M.B.174A-3 · M.B.175T|
|M.D 450||M.D.450B Barougan · M.D.450B Ouragan|
|Mystère||M.D.452 IIA · M.D.452 IIC · Mystere IVA|
|Super Mystère||Super Mystere B2|
|Super Étendard||Super Etendard|
|Mirage III||Mirage IIIC · Mirage IIIE · Milan|
|Mirage V||Mirage 5F|
|Mirage F1||Mirage F1C · Mirage F1C-200 · Mirage F1CT|
|Mirage 2000||Mirage 2000-5F · Mirage 2000C-S5 · Mirage 2000D-R1|
|M.D 450||M.D.450B Ouragan|
|Super Mystère||Sambad · Sa'ar**|
|*The company was named "Société des Avions Marcel Bloch" before being renamed in 1947|
|**Israeli Super Mystère refitted with new avionics and an American engine|
|Israel jet aircraft|
|Kfir Canard · Kfir C.2 · Kfir C.7 · Nesher|
|Meteor||Meteor NF.13 · Meteor F.8|
|Vautour||Vautour IIA · Vautour IIN|
|Super Mystere||Sambad · Sa'ar|
|Other||M.D.450B Ouragan · Mystere IVA|
|A-4||A-4H · A-4E Early (M) · A-4E · Ayit|
|F-4||Kurnass · Kurnass 2000|
|F-16||Netz · Barak II|