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P-39N-0 Airacobra
General characteristics
1 personCrew
4.7 tTake-off weight
3.22 kg/sBurst mass
Flight characteristics
9 700 mCeiling
Allison V-1710-85Engine
waterCooling system
Speed of destruction
886 km/hStructural
322 km/hGear
Offensive armament
37 mm M4 cannonWeapon 1
30 roundsAmmunition
146 shots/minFire rate
2 x 12.7 mm M2 Browning machine gunWeapon 2
400 roundsAmmunition
750 shots/minFire rate
4 x 7.62 mm Browning machine gunWeapon 3
3 000 roundsAmmunition
1 001 shots/minFire rate
Suspended armament
6 x M8 rocketSetup 1
14 000 Rp icon.pngResearch
55 000 Sl icon.pngPurchase
Sl icon.png2 740 / 3 567/3 930 / 5 116/1 210 / 1 575Repair
16 000 Sl icon.pngCrew training
55 000 Sl icon.pngExperts
320 Ge icon.pngAces
130 % Rp icon.pngReward for battle
300 % Sl icon.png250 % Sl icon.png90 % Sl icon.png
This page is about the American fighter P-39N-0. For other uses, see P-39 (Family).


GarageImage P-39N-0.jpg

The P-39N-0 Airacobra is a rank II American fighter with a battle rating of 3.3 (AB) and 3.0 (RB/SB). It has been in the game since the start of the Open Beta Test prior to Update 1.27.

The primary purpose of a P-39 is that of a low-level interceptor against low energy aircraft. It lacks the high-altitude performance needed to engage strategic bombers. The 37 mm M4's dropping trajectory and slow rate of fire make it useless in head-on passes. Therefore, prioritise low altitude objectives, like escorting attackers or low-alt bombers, or prey on the ones of the enemy.

General info

Flight performance

Describe how the aircraft behaves in the air. Speed, manoeuvrability, acceleration and allowable loads - these are the most important characteristics of the vehicle.

Max Speed
(km/h at 3,048 m)
Max altitude
Turn time
Rate of climb
Take-off run
613 593 9 700 18.9 19.9 10.5 10.5 280
Max Speed
(km/h at 3,048 m)
Max altitude
Turn time
Rate of climb
Take-off run
680 641 9 700 17.8 18.0 21.2 14.9 280


Combat flaps Take-off flaps Landing flaps Air brakes Arrestor gear
Wing-break speed
Gear limit
Combat flaps
Max Static G
+ -
450 ~12 ~9
Optimal velocities
< 360 < 380 < 450 > 312
Compressor (RB/SB)
Setting 1
Optimal altitude 100% Engine power WEP Engine power
2,800 m 1,125 hp 1,446 hp

Survivability and armour

  • 15.87 mm Steel - Propeller hub
  • 15.87 mm Steel - Plate in front of the cockpit
  • 7 mm Steel - Plate over instrument cluster
  • 6 mm Steel - Upper pilot's seat and headrest encasement
  • 6 mm Steel - Rear tail
  • 38 mm Bulletproof glass - Windscreen
  • 64 mm Bulletproof glass - Headrest of pilot's seat


Offensive armament

The P-39N-0 is armed with:

  • 1 x 37 mm M4 cannon, nose-mounted (30 rpg)
  • 2 x 12.7 mm Browning M2 machine guns, nose-mounted (200 rpg = 400 total)
  • 4 x 7.62 mm Browning machine guns, wing-mounted (500 rpg outer + 1,000 rpg inner = 3,000 total)

Suspended armament

Main article: M8

The P-39N-0 can be outfitted with the following ordnance:

  • Without load
  • 6 x M8 rockets

Usage in battles

Basic dogfighting skills apply. Use energy tactics and only fire the cannon under optimum conditions. A separate key for the main gun is advised. Otherwise, utilise the given machine guns at every opportunity. Especially those 7.62 mm light machine guns in the wings, with 3,000 rounds you wont run dry that fast. The center/cowling mounted .50 cals provide great long range accuracy & harassment.

"Jack of all trades, master of none" is the credo of the Airacobra. Thus the basic tactic is to analyse your opponent's weakness and then exploit it. The P-39 will always find an area in which to exceed the foe, or at least is enough of a match to allow pilot skill to dictate the outcome of the engagement. Given the P-39's sleek and rather aerodynamic form, BnZ is the preferred form of combat. However TnB is an option as well. Again, the P-39 provides all the options a pilot could want: "Jack of all traits, master of none".

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 Offensive 12 mm
III Wings repair Engine Offensive 37 mm New 12 mm MGs
IV Engine injection Cover New 37 mm cannons Rocket Launcher M10

Pros and cons


  • Heavy armament
  • Great dive speed and acceleration
  • Reasonable turn time
  • Great amount of 7.62 (.306) ammo (750 rpg)


  • "Jack of all trades, but master of none"
  • Three different weapon trajectories make aiming difficult, although this is less of a problem if you are a proficient P-400 pilot
  • Long countdown for the 37 mm in both overheating and reload
  • Easy to stall with full controls
  • Cannot fire the 2 MGs separately
  • Ammunition count for the M2s is low, limiting their usage time


Up to this time, the Airacobra had been manufactured in relatively small numbers. The first Airacobra model to be produced in really large numbers was the P-39N (Bell Model 26C and F), 2095 examples being built. The first 1100 P-39Ns were part of that order for P-39Gs which had been distributed among P-39Ks, Ls, and Ms, but the remaining 995 Ns were new orders.

All P-39Ns were powered by the V-1710-85 (E19) engine rated at 1200 hp for takeoff and 1115 hp at 15,500 feet. The power rating was similar to that of the M- model's V-1710-83, but with a different propeller reduction gear ratio and an Aeroproducts propeller in place of the Curtiss Electric.

After completion of the first 166 P-39Ns, the USAAF requested that four fuel cells be removed in order to reduce the internal fuel capacity from 120 to 87 US gallons, and so to reduce the maximum permissible gross weight from 9100 lbs to 8750 lbs. This kept weight down, but unfortunately it also restricted range. Therefore, kits were provided that allowed the four fuel cells to be refitted in the field.

The first 166 P-39Ns were fitted with an Aeroproducts propeller having a dimaeter of 10 feet 4 inches. Beginning with the 167th P-39N, the Aeroproducts propeller was enlarged to 11 feet 7 inches in diameter, an increase of six inches.

The 500 P-39Ns were followed by 900 P-39N-1s (Model 26C). These differed only in some minor internal changes which altered the location of the center of gravity.

The last Ns were the 695 P-39N-5s (Model 26C-5). They differed from earlier Ns in having the total weight of armor reduced from 231 to 193 pounds. A curved armor head plate supplanted the bulletproof glass behind the pilot. An SCR-695 radio was fitted, and a new oxygen system was fitted.

There were numerous conversions to ground support, including 35 P-39Ns converted to P-39N-3-BE, 128 P-39N-1-BEs converted to P-39N-2-BE, and 84 P-39N-5-BEs to P-39N-6-BE.

An order for 205 additional P-39Ns was cancelled.

The "O" letter was never used, lest it be confused with the number zero. For some reason, the designation P-39P was also never assigned.

The serials of the P-39Ns were as follows:

42-4944/5043   	Bell P-39N-BE Airacobra 
				originally part of P-39G order.  100 planes
42-8727/9126 	Bell P-39N-BE Airacobra 
				originally part of P-39G order.  400 planes
				8808/8842 as P-39N-3-BE
42-9127/9726    	Bell P-39N-1-BE Airacobra 
				originally part of P-39G order.  600 planes
				9141,9145, 9148,9150,9152,9211,9255,9416,9615,9677,9697/9712,
				9714/9724,9726 to P-39N-2.
42-18246/18545 	Bell P-39N-1-BE Airacobra
				300 planes 
				18327,18466,18485/18546 to P-39N-2
42-18546/19240 	Bell P-39N-5-BE Airacobra 
				695 planes
				18927/18933,18935/18941,18947,19043 to P-39N-6. 

42-19241/19445 cancelled contract for Bell P-39N Airacobra

In-game description

Bell's P-39 Airacobra was a WWII-era American fighter that was notable for its uncommon design: the engine was placed behind the cockpit, and the landing gear moved from the tail to the nose. The aircraft was adopted by five countries: USA, Britain, Soviet Union, Portugal and Australia.

The P-39N was the first variant to be mass produced, with the P-39N-0 getting a new V-1710-85(E19) engine and a 3-blade Aeroproducts propeller with a 3.15 meter diameter. Starting from aircraft #167, some fuel tanks were removed from the wings to reduce weight, and a connection for additional fuel tanks was installed under the hull. To further increase flight performance, Soviet engineers often removed the wing-mounted machine guns, leaving two nose machine guns and a cannon.

As this variant, Bell produced 2,095 aircraft. Most of these were sent to the Soviet Union on the US's Lend-Lease program. In November 1942, the USSR received the first Airacobras, and the fighters showed good results in battle maneuvers at low and moderate altitudes. Many famous Soviet aces — such as Pokrishkin Alexander Ivanovich, Rechkalov Gregory Andreevich, Gulaev Dmitry Nikolaevich and Kutakhov Pavel Stepanovich — piloted the Airacobras during WWII.


Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.

See also

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.

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

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

USA fighters
P-26 Peashooter  P-26A-33 · P-26A-34 · P-26A-34 M2 · P-26B-35
P-36 Hawk  P-36A · Rasmussen's P-36A · P-36C · P-36G
P-39 Airacobra  P-400 · P-39N-0 · P-39Q-5
P-40  P-40C · P-40E-1 · P-40F-10
P-43 Lancer  P-43A-1
P-47 Thunderbolt  P-47D-25 · P-47D-28 · P-47M-1-RE · ⋠P-47M-1-RE · P-47N-15
P-51 Mustang  P-51 · P-51A (Thunder League) · P-51D-5 · P-51D-10 · P-51D-20-NA · P-51D-30 · P-51H-5-NA
P-63 Kingcobra  P-63A-5 · P-63A-10 · P-63C-5 · ␠Kingcobra
Prototypes  XP-55
F2A Buffalo  F2A-1 · Thach's F2A-1 · F2A-3
F3F  F3F-2 · Galer's F3F-2
F4F Wildcat  F4F-3 · F4F-4
F4U Corsair  F4U-1A · F4U-1A (USMC) · F4U-1D · F4U-1C · F4U-4 · F4U-4B · F4U-4B VMF-214
F6F Hellcat  F6F-5 · F6F-5N
F8F Bearcat  F8F-1 · F8F-1B
Other countries  ▃Ki-43-II · ▃Ki-61-Ib · ▃A6M2 · ▃Bf 109 F-4 · ▃Fw 190 A-8 · ▃Spitfire LF Mk IXc