Kawasaki Ki-48-I Lily

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Kawasaki Ki-48-I (九九式双発軽爆撃機一型)
The Kawasaki Ki-48-I was a Japanese light bomber commissioned in 1940. It was produced from 1939 to 1942, ending production with 557 aircraft.
When the Second Sino-Japanese War began in July 1937, China quickly received Tupolev SB planes from the Soviet Union, which was a very fast bomber (it flew at a similar speed as the Ki-27 fighters). Therefore, in December 1937, the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force (IJAAS) commissioned the Kawasaki plant to create a new light bomber to replace the obsolete Ki-2 aircraft. The requirements were based on the specifications of the Tupolev SB aircraft, and they were as follows:

  • Top speed of 480 km/h or faster
  • Cruising power of 6 hours or more
  • Bomb load over 400 kg
  • Equipped with a rotating machine gun (turret) on the top and bottom of the front and rear
  • The engine is equipped with two Nakajima Ha-25 engines

At this point (1938) the Kawasaki plant was working on other projects, so the Ki-48 aircraft was given a lower priority. The first prototype was ready in July 1939. 4 prototypes were created and handed over for testing to the army. In September, during tests, there were problems with the fluttering of the horizontal stabilizer. Between September and November, four prototypes were modified to reinforce the fuselage tail section.Thanks to these modifications, no more problems arose, which allowed the Ki-48 aircraft to be accepted into production at the end of November 1939, the aircraft was officially accepted into service on May 11, 1940. Production of the Ki-48-I aircraft continued until 1942, when it was replaced by a better variant of the Ki-48-II.

Pictures of the Ki-48-I


OIP (3)

Construction description
The Ki-48-I aircraft was a medium-wing aircraft equipped with two engines mounted in nacelles on the wings. The hull of the Ki-48-I had a streamlined bulbous shape, which housed a 4-person crew, there were retractable machine gun turrets on the front, rear and lower mounts, and there was also a bomb bay in the fuselage. To maintain balance, part of the tail was made in the form of a long thin beam.

Technical sketches



General characteristics

  • Wingspan: 17.46 m
  • Length: 12.59 m
  • Height: 3.8 m
  • Wing area: 40m2
  • Empty weight: 4,050 kg
  • Takeoff weight: 5,900 kg
  • Maximum weight take-off: 6,050 kg
  • Powerplant: 2 x Air-cooled two-star fourteen-cylinder Nakajima Ha-25 engine with 990 hp take-off power
  • Propellers: three-bladed propellers with variable pitch and a diameter of 2.9 m


  • Maximum speed: 480 km/h
  • Cruising speed: 350 km/h
  • Range: 1980 km
  • Maximum Range: 2400 km
  • Service Ceiling: 9500 m
  • Time to Climb: 9 min to 5000 m


  1. Fixed armament
  • 1 x Te-4 machine guns (in the nose)( 408 reinforcements in 6 magazines of 68 rounds)
  • 1 x Te-4 machine guns (under hull) (612 rounds in 9 magazines of 68 rounds)
  • 1 x Type 89 “Special” Machine Gun (upper turret) (900 rounds in 10 magazines of 90 rounds)
Firing zones

Zrzut ekranu 2024-06-09 192046

  1. Maximum load in the bomb bay: 300-400 kg
  • 6-8 x 50 kg bombs
  • 3-4 x 100 kg bombs

Special thanks to the user

The Kawasaki Ki-48-I would be a very interesting aircraft for Japan in War Thunder. This aircraft would be ideally suited as a low-rank bomber that was fast but had a small bomb load and no armor. This aircraft was famous for its maneuverability, which would be very useful for escaping from enemy fighters. I encourage you to discuss in the comments and to share your own knowledge on this subject.
Finally, I apologize for the linguistic and logical errors because unfortunately English is not my main language and I had to use google translator.

Possible camouflages

p1 (1)
R (1)


Internet sources

九九式双発軽爆撃機 - Wikipedia
Kawasaki Ki-48 - Wikipedia
Kawasaki Ki 48-I : Kawasaki (valka.cz)
Kawasaki Ki-48 LILY - light bomber (aviastar.org)
Kawasaki Ki 48 Lily (freeola.com)
Уголок неба ¦ Kawasaki Ki-48 (airwar.ru)
Japanese Aircraft of WWII: Kawasaki Ki-48
Kawasaki Ki-48 Sokei (Lily) Fast-Bomber / Dive Bomber Aircraft (militaryfactory.com)
Kawasaki Ki-48 Sokei Light bomber (airpages.ru)
Kawasaki Ki-48 Sokei (Lily): Photos, History, Specification
Kawasaki Ki-48 - Japan - War Thunder - Official Forum

Book sources

+1, having this plane only be available as an event vehicle is a bit sad.

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The actual defensive armament is a Te-4 machine gun in the nose and under the fuselage, and a Type 89 flexible machine gun (special) in the rear turret.
Te-4 machine guns in the nose and under the fuselage use 68-round magazines. The nose one has 6 magazines for a total of 408 rounds, and the one at the under the fuselage has 9 magazines for a total of 612 rounds.
The Type 89 flexible machine gun (special) in the rear turret uses two 90-round magazine. There are 10 magazines for a total of 900 rounds.



Not only War Thunder, but also various sources mention that IJAAS used the single-barreled Type 89 flexible machine gun. However, the Type 89 flexible machine gun is a two-barreled machine gun as standard, and the (特(Toku), special) after the name simply means that the magazine has been improved.

So what is the single-barreled Type 89 flexible machine gun?
It’s the Te-4 machine gun. The full name is Te-4 Experimental single-barrel flexible machine gun (type 2)(テ4 試製単銃身旋回機関銃(二型)).
This machine gun was developed based on the Type 89 flexible machine gun, and some called it the Type 89 flexible machine gun (Kai Tan, improvement short)(八九式旋回機関銃(改単)). Therefore, it later became indistinguishable from the already existed two-barreled Type 89 flexible machine gun.


At least one variant of this much produced plane is needed in the tech tree, without being a premium or an event vehicle. +1

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Something that came up while I was trying to use the event Ki-48-II Otsu - it doesn’t have a bombsight for level bombing. Would this Ki-48-I have one, and is the Ki-48-II Otsu missing it?

If I’m not mistaken, the front gunner is also a bombardier, just like in the B-17

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Ah, so the Ki-48-II Otsu is missing it. I’ll need to find some information on it then.

The second book source is the Ki-48-I and Ki-48-II manual

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Gaijin stated it’s missing from the Ki-48-IIb in game as that is specifically the aircraft modified for testing with Ki-148 missiles, which had the level bombing sight removed. That is also their reasoning for the limited bomb loads. I assume they would’ve removed the bombs completely for that, but left some for gameplay purposes.

The in game model is still missing dive brakes on the wings though that are still in images of the test aircraft.

This also means the in game Ki-48-IIb is not the serial production model, so that can be introduced separately.

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Ah, cool. Still a shame that even with the bombs it doesn’t get a proper bombload or bombsight, would make it a lot more useful.

This further reinforces the need to have the production vehicle. It is truly absurd that Gaijin has allocated so many resources to the conception of a prototype which is only useful for taking down battleships. They could have easily added the service variant by simply adding it a bomb sight and a nose gun to turn it into a complete Ki-48 IIb bomber!

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