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This page is about the Soviet fighter MiG-3-15. For other versions, see MiG-3 (Family).


GarageImage MiG-3-15.jpg

The MiG-3-15 is a rank II Soviet fighter with a battle rating of 1.7 (AB/SB) and 2.3 (RB). It has been in the game since the start of the Open Beta Test before to Update 1.27.

In early War Thunder aerial matches, it is not uncommon for bomber aircraft to climb higher up into higher altitudes. Doing so they can circle their targets and bomb in relative comfort. This is because a majority of early fighters struggle to reach these heights. One of the first aircraft in the game to break this tradition is the MiG-3-15 designed by and built at the Mikoyan-Gurevich manufacturing plant. The design of the MiG-3 specifically allocated it to be a high altitude interceptor, one that could out-pace a Bf 109 of the time at an altitude of 6,096 m (20,000 ft) by over 20 kph (just under 20 mph). However, when flying at sea-level, the Mikulin AM-35A struggled to maintain pace with the 109 at 505 kph (314 mph).

At lower altitudes, especially in arcade battles, using WEP to gain altitude goes a long way. With only a couple of cycles of WEP, the MiG-3 pilot will find themselves comfortably sitting at 3,660 m (12,000 ft) where the Mikulin engine is in its element. It is here that the MiG-3-15 can continue to climb or can watch for unwary prey below which it can pounce on with Boom & Zoom tactics. Dogfighting in the MiG-3 can be difficult but is not impossible; the primary keys are to maintain energy and have plenty of altitude to work with. The MiG-3 is nowhere as agile as the Bf 109 or many other fighters and can seem quite stiff in the controls. Utilising engine control (speed), combat flaps and the aircraft's strong rudder, the MiG-3 can get out of some sticky situations or even position themselves on the tail of an enemy aircraft.

Centrally located machine guns do not require configuring a convergence point and make it easier to target aircraft both right in front or those 600+ meters away. Unfortunately, the MiG-3-15 only has a single 12.7 mm machine gun and two 7.62 machine guns to pummel their enemies. The guns while reliable tend not to jam, however, the low calibre of the ammunition requires decisive shots on the enemy pilot, engine or fuel tanks to be effective at all. Aircraft fuselage, especially those of bombers, can take a severe beating with these machine guns and show virtually no damage at all. On the other hand, engines, flesh and ignitable fuel area less forgiving against the machine gunfire. Due to the weaker nature of the machine gun ammunition, Stealth ammunition may provide the necessary amount of time to dial in on the enemy aircraft's weak points. This critical amount of time allows more shots before the enemy pilot can determine where the shots are coming from and then evade.

Knowing the aircraft's weaknesses will help the pilot discover its strengths. While it is not as agile as its counterparts and contemporaries, it can be a battering ram in its own right. Underestimating a MiG-3 can lead another pilot to scratch their head in wonder as they try to figure out how they were shot down. It can also cause bomber pilots to immediately dive away when they realise a MiG-3-15 is bearing down on them.

General info

Flight performance

As mentioned above, the MiG-3-15 is not the acrobat type aircraft like the I-16 or the Bf 109, however when flown to its capabilities, it is an excellent aircraft. The MiG-3 is a relatively fast aircraft and becomes increasingly faster as it gains altitude. Known as a high-altitude fighter, the MiG-3 excels from about 3,660 - 9,150 m (12,000 - 30,000 ft). Flying altitudes lower than 3,660 m (12,000 ft) will see a significant drop in speed and manoeuvrability.

Higher altitudes give the MiG-3 and opportunity to cache in on its speed during a dive when performing Boom & Zoom tactics. This method potentially allows for multiple passes on an aircraft (especially more massive bombers) if needed without sacrificing speed as done in a turn-based dog fight. When flown properly, the MiG-3-15 is relatively energy-efficient and can return to its altitude perch with relative ease. The MiG-3 if needed, can perform short climbing spirals allowing for slower or less energy-advantaged aircraft following to stall-out and here the MiG-3 pilot and kick over the rudder and pounce on the floundering aircraft. Solid rudder kicks can also help a MiG-3-15 make a sharp rolling manoeuvre, however, caution must be taken not to lose too much speed.

Sometimes a MiG-3 pilot will find themselves at a lower altitude where their aircraft's engine is at a disadvantage. If there are enemies nearby, your best bet is to get away from them and work on gaining altitude. Sometimes this is not an option, and you must fight where you are at; just know that the aircraft will not be as responsive as it is at higher altitudes.

Characteristics Max Speed
(km/h at 7,800 m)
Max altitude
Turn time
Rate of climb
Take-off run
Stock 615 597 12000 25.2 26.2 12.4 12.4 300
Upgraded 669 640 22.8 24.0 20.8 16.0


Combat flaps Take-off flaps Landing flaps Air brakes Arrestor gear
Wings (km/h) Gear (km/h) Flaps (km/h) Max Static G
Combat Take-off Landing + -
677 320 480 480 280 ~12 ~5
Optimal velocities (km/h)
Ailerons Rudder Elevators Radiator
< 300 < 280 < 440 > 320
Compressor (RB/SB)
Setting 1
Optimal altitude 100% Engine power WEP Engine power
6,100 m 1,200 hp 1,446 hp

Survivability and armour

  • 8 mm Steel plate behind the pilot.
  • 8.5 mm Steel plate under the pilot.
  • No armour glazing
  • Critical components located at front of aircraft (fuel, pilot, engine, controls)
  • More fuel tanks located in wings near fuselage


Offensive armament

The MiG-3-15 is armed with:

  • 1 x 12.7 mm Berezin UB machine gun, nose-mounted (300 rpg)
  • 2 x 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns, nose-mounted (750 rpg = 1,500 total)

Usage in battles

The MiG-3 has a few issues that can hinder its success on the battlefront. Its power plant, although powerful for its time, performs best above 4,000 m (approx. 12,000 ft) altitude, and as a result of the early MiG's speed and climb rate at lower altitudes may be disappointing at first, particularly when stock. Its armament, one 12.7 mm Berezin UB machine gun and two 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns, is generally inferior to its Allied and German opposition (its contemporaries on the Eastern Front, the Emil and Friedrich 109s, have 20 mm cannon armament on hand). Manoeuvrability can be a problem, especially at lower altitudes, as the plane bleeds speed in turns and can lock up at high speeds during dives. Despite these flaws, the MiG-3 in all its variants can be seen as a good stepping stone towards learning how to utilize the tricky-to-fly I-185s, especially in practic ing Boom & Zoom attacks as well as energy fighting.

Specific enemies worth noting

  • Bf 109 E-1 - The Bf 109 shares your battle rating in arcade battles and are frequently encountered. They have a higher top speed, perform well at high altitude (above 4,000 m like the MiG-3) and have fantastic energy retention. You do have some firepower advantage; however, a battle with a Bf 109 E-1 often becomes a battle of energy retention; the pilot with higher energy usually wins. Try to get a height advantage when going against one and take it by surprise.
  • Spitfire Mk Ia - The Spitfire is one of the most manoeuvrable monoplane fighters in the game. It also has excellent anti-fighter capabilities with its 8 x 7.7 mm machine guns. Avoid engaging a Spitfire in a turn fight as you will bleed off your speed and are easily out-turned. The Spitfire is also quite fast and accelerates well, so don't be surprised if after a failed Boom & Zoom attempt you have a Spitfire gaining on your tail. Luckily for the MiG-3, the Spitfire performs poorly at high altitude. Luring one to upwards of 3,000 m (10,000 ft), you can then sap it of its energy and gain an advantage over it. The Spitfire is a poor diver too, so if one attempts to flee, you can quickly out dive it. Diving also makes for an effective defensive option against the Spitfire.
  • A6M2-N - Like the Spitfire, except slower, more manoeuvrable and with a great big float to shoot at. Same rules apply. Don't turn fight, just Boom & Zoom. The incendiary ammo from your 12.7 mm will set these on fire easily.
  • P-36 (all variants) - The P-36 is very well armed (4 x 7.62 mm Browning machine guns and 2 x 12.7 mm M2 Browning machine guns). This armament means that it has an edge in firepower over the MiG-3. It also has an advantage in manoeuvrability, whilst also being quite fast, and this makes it a challenging opponent. Your performance is superior to the P-36 over 4,000 m (12,000 ft), so try to lure it up to higher altitudes. You also have a much better climb rate than the P-36, so get an altitude advantage and then dive. Boom & Zoom works best here.

Manual Engine Control

MEC elements
Mixer Pitch Radiator Supercharger Turbocharger
Oil Water Type
Controllable Controllable
Not auto controlled
Not auto controlled
Not auto controlled
Separate Not controllable
1 gear
Not controllable


Tier Flight performance Survivability Weaponry
I Fuselage repair Radiator Offensive 7 mm
II Compressor Airframe New 7 mm MGs
III Wings repair Engine Offensive 12 mm
IV Engine injection Cover New 12 mm MGs

Pros and cons


  • Gets air spawn in Realistic battles
  • Upgraded aircraft climbs well - one of the few Soviet prop-fighters that can effectively use WEP
  • Excellent for high-altitude fighting (bomber hunting or Boom & Zoom)
  • Efficient glider - in the event of an oil or water leak shutting down the engine, with sufficient altitude, the MiG-3 can glide back to base
  • Nose mounted armament makes for very accurate shooting without dealing with convergence issues
  • 12.7 mm and 2 x 7.62 mm ShKAS is more than adequate to deal with aircraft the MiG-3 faces, though aiming for critical components conserves ammunition
  • Good climb rate


  • Stiff controls at low altitude or during high speeds
  • Sluggish turn time compared to other fighters (some heavy fighters can out turn it)
  • Performance significantly drops when below 4,000 m (12,000 ft)
  • Overheats easily with WEP
  • Sensitive brakes when on the ground, can cause plane to tip forward


Describe the history of the creation and combat usage of the aircraft in more detail than in the introduction. If the historical reference turns out to be too long, take it to a separate article, taking a link to the article about the vehicle and adding a block "/History" (example: https://wiki.warthunder.com/(Vehicle-name)/History) and add a link to it here using the main template. Be sure to reference text and sources by using <ref></ref>, as well as adding them at the end of the article with <references />. This section may also include the vehicle's dev blog entry (if applicable) and the in-game encyclopedia description (under === In-game description ===, also if applicable).

In-game description

A single-seat monoplane fighter with an all-metal construction, closed cockpit and retractable landing gear with a tail wheel.

The fighter was initially developed by N.N. Polikarpov, and later by A.I. Mikoyan and M.I. Gurevich at OKB-155.

The experimental I-200 fighter took its maiden flight on 5 April 1940. The plane went into series production in June 1940 at aircraft plant No. 1 in Moscow under the designation MiG-1.

The MiG-3 model joined the series in February 1941, with a modified wing, larger landing gear, an additional fuselage fuel tank, a new radiator, modified flaps and self-sealing for the centerwing fuel tanks.

The MiG-3 series fighters were powered by the twin-row V12 Mikulin AM-35A engine with a maximum output of 1,350 hp. This was a geared-down engine with a single-stage supercharger and an air pressure regulator.

The armament on the first few MiG-3 series consisted of two 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns with 750 rounds each and one synchronized large-caliber 12.7 mm Berezina BS machine gun with 300 rounds. All three machine guns were placed above the engine.

The design also allowed for the suspension of two containers under the wing, each housing an unsynchronized large-caliber 12.7 mm Berezina BK machine gun.

The plane's bombing equipment consisted of four locking DZ-40 bomb racks mounted under the wing, each able to carry up to 100 kg. The overall weight of its bomb load was no greater than 220 kg. The MiG-3 could carry the AO-8/-10/-25 and FAB-50/-100, cluster bombs and bottles of KS incendiary fluid.

The plane possessed the PBP-1A collimator sight, which allowed it to use all types of anti-air and anti-ground weapons.

Before the Great Patriotic War, the MiG-3 was the most prolific modern fighter in the Soviet Air Forces. From June 1941, it was widely used on the front in Soviet Air Forces units, naval aviation units and Air Defense Forces units.

In total, 3172 of these planes were made. The MiG-3's production ended in December 1941. Its use continued in Soviet Air Forces divisions until 1943, and in air defense fleets until the end of the war.

Notable pilots

  • The Mig-3 was the first fighter Pokryshkin flew and racked up almost 20 victories with it.



See also

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • encyclopedia page on the aircraft;
  • other literature.

Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau (Микоя́н и Гуре́вич Опытное конструкторское бюро)
Fighters  MiG-3-15 · MiG-3-15 (BK) · MiG-3-34
Jet fighters  MiG-9 · MiG-9 (l)
  MiG-15 · MiG-15bis · MiG-15bis ISH
  MiG-21F-13 · MiG-21PFM · MiG-21SMT · MiG-21bis
  MiG-23M · MiG-23MLD
Exports/Licensed  ␗MiG-9 · ␗MiG-9 (l)
  J-2* · ▀MiG-15bis
  J-4* · MiG-17AS · Shenyang F-5*
  J-6A* · ▀MiG-19S
  MiG-21 SPS-K · ▀MiG-21MF ·MiG-21bis-SAU · J-7II**
  *Licensed and domesticated with Chinese designations.
  **Unlicensed, reverse-engineered and domesticated with Chinese designations.
See Also  Shenyang · Chengdu

USSR fighters
I-15  I-15 WR · I-15 M-22 · I-15R · I-15bis
I-153  I-153 M-62 · Zhukovsky's I-153-M62 · I-153P
I-16  I-16 type 5 · I-16 type 10 · I-16 type 18 · I-16 type 24 · I-16 type 27 · I-16 type 28 · I-180S
I-29  I-29
I-185  I-185 (M-71) · I-185 (M-82)
I-225  I-225
ITP  ITP (M-1)
MiG-3  MiG-3-15 · MiG-3-15 (BK) · MiG-3-34
LaGG  I-301 · LaGG-3-4 · LaGG-3-8 · LaGG-3-11 · LaGG-3-23 · LaGG-3-34 · LaGG-3-35 · LaGG-3-66
La  La-5 · La-5F · La-5FN · La-7 · Dolgushin's La-7 · La-7B-20 · La-9 · La-11
Yak-1/7  Yak-1 · Yak-1B · Yak-7B
Yak-3  Yak-3 · Yak-3P · Yak-3T · Yak-3U · Yak-3 (VK-107)
Yak-9  Yak-9 · Yak-9B · Golovachev's Yak-9M · Yak-9T · Yak-9K · Yak-9U · Yak-9UT · Yak-9P
Other countries  ▂P-40E-1 · ▂P-47D-27 · ▂Hurricane Mk IIB · ▂Fw 190 D-9 · ▂Spitfire Mk IXc
P-39  ▂P-39K-1 · ▂Pokryshkin's P-39N-0 · ▂P-39Q-15
P-63  ▂P-63A-5 · ▂P-63A-10 · ▂P-63C-5