Mirage F1 M53: The Unexpected Contender

Would you like to see this in-game?
  • Yes, don’t care how
  • Yes, as a researchable vehicle
  • Yes, as a premium/event/squadron vehicle
  • No
0 voters

Hello guys, I would like to (re-)suggest a new and interesting aircraft, the Mirage F1 M53, or the alternate name, Mirage F1 E

The Mirage F1 M53 actually started its life as a testbed for the new SNECMA M53 engine, which was intended for use on the Mirage 2000. This engine is quite a lot more powerful than the standard engine you would find in the standard mirage F1C, that engine, being the Atar 09K50 provided a standard thrust of 5000kgf and an afterburner thrust of 7160kgf. The new M53 engine on the other hand provided a standard thrust of 5550kgf and an afterburner thrust of 8500kgf. This allowed the mirage F1 M53 to get significantly improved performance over its default brother. Operational ceiling was increased by 4000 feet (1219m). Climb speed at sea level was increased by 60m/s and doubled at altitude, this resulted in a reduction of 2.5mins for climb time to 40000 feet (12200m) and an increase in sustained turned rate at mach 0.95 by 0.7Gs. Top speed remained unchanged.

Fitting of this new engine required some changes to the design of the aircraft, larger inlets, and heftier landing gear. The external appearance was generally the same, though the fuselage was stretched by 23 centimeters (9 inches) and empty weight increased by a little over 8%. It was also fitted with a retractable inflight refueling probe.

As far as avionics go, the prototype was fitted with the F1 Cs avionics, meaning that it was unable to perform true multirole missions and was strictly limited to AA duties.

First flown in 1974, 8 years after the first Mirage F1 took to the skies, it reached a speed of Mach 1.35. In later flights it would reach above mach 2.

The vehicle actually performed so well that a plan was made to turn it into a production model and offer it up for the “deal of the century”, the joint request of a couple of European nations including Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark for a replacement for their aging F-104s. For this request, the F1 M53 was rebranded to F1 E (E for export) and was entered into the competition. The French government also pledged to buy some of the model themselves to assure possible customers of the quality of the product. If orders were to arise, the production models would receive upgraded avionics to allow for true multirole missions. These were to be the inertial guidance SAGEM Kearfott SNKN 2603, a heads up display and the Cyrano IV-100 radar. However, as no orders ever materialized (The F-16 won the contract, being a more modern aircraft), these were never mounted, and the second prototype which was planned to receive these was scrapped before completion. The name F1 E was freed up again for later models, with the designation of this aircraft changing back to F1 M53. The airframe was later also used to test out a newer iteration of the M53 engine, the M53-5.

As far as armament goes, the actual prototype didn’t have a radar mounted, but as seen in images, was able to carry 2x matra R550 magics, and likely had the twin DEFAs installed or at the very least would’ve had the openings for them. However, since a second prototype was under construction and further avionics and armament was entirely planned out and only really needed integration, we can tell exactly what the final loadouts would’ve been, spread out over a total of 7 hardpoints (some of which dedicated to fuel tanks)

What it would bring to the game is basically a true counterpart to the Viggen, since it was also offered as such. The vehicle would greatly outperform a standard Mirage F1 C and would be able to perform multirole missions on top of that, but it does still lack a pulse doppler radar and thus doesn’t have more than limited look down/shoot down abilities. Integrated countermeasures are also an unclear subject, and the airplane would therefore likely have to rely on external pods for this, taking up hardpoint space.

General characteristics:

Wing span: 8.45m
length: 15.53m
height: 4.56m
Empty weight: 8100kg
Take-off weight: 11550kg
Maximum take-off weight:15550kg
Powerplant: 1x SNECMA M53-2
Max continuous speed at altitude: mach 2.2
landing speed: 235 kph
climb rate: 300m/s


  • 2x 30mm DEFA cannons (270 rpg)

  • 2x AIM-9 Sidewinder (likely B model in French service)

  • 2x R550 magic (always on wingtip hardpoints and as such combinable with all other payloads)

  • 2x R530

  • 2x Super 530F

  • AS.37 Martel (2?)

  • AM.39 Exocet (1?)

  • Packs of 18 or 36 Matra SNEB

  • “More than three tons of bombs of various kinds”


Dassault Mirage F1.M53 - fighter

Dassault Mirage F1

Dassault Mirage F1E-M53


Extra images

mounting of the M53 engine in the F1 airframe.

Image without the nosecone shows us the area didn’t hold a radar on the prototype, but instead held a lot of sensors for testing.


+1 for squadron vehicle



1 Like

Interesting but I do not see how it could be add reasonably.

I think it would fare well at 11.3. Imo the regular Mirage F1s are overtiered and should drop to 11.0 making space for the M53 above them

They struggle because it’s radar and Super 530F are borderline useless in War Thunder.
With the changes coming to Magic 2 you would most likely have have Mirage F.1 at 11.0 with Magic 1 only.

The issue with this F1 is, being a 70’s prototype, can’t get the Magic 2 : it is stuck with Magic 1 and Super 530F.

Even with the better flight perfomances, i doubt the weaponry would make it a worth while 11.3. The Magic 1, although it is a good missile at 10.3, is still rear aspect only and if the current F1 at 11.3 is carried by the Magic 2, at 11.3 the Magic 1 show it’s limits and you have only two of them, while the 530F is already proven quite worthless against anything with some chaffs. The flight perfomance would be better yes, but at the cost of the firepower.

In 11.3 you still have :

  • F4J and S with 4 Aim 7F and 4 Aim 9G or H.
  • Mig 23 ML and MLD with 4 all aspect R60M and 2 really strong R24R
  • Tornado F.3, the ultimate missile truck with 4 Aim 9L and 4 Skyflash SuperTEMP
  • JA37D Viggen, with 4 Aim 9L and 2 Aim 7E-2

11.3 have a lot of all aspect missiles, thoses who don’t have them still have a lot of missiles and good radar missiles that provide an all aspect capability. I don’t think that at 11.3 it would be worth for the F1 to lose in the already weak firepower to get better flight performance.

an 11.0 F1 would not need to lose the Magic 2 i think, for the same reason why the F1 M53 would be bad at 11.3 : it would make it’s firepower really bad, the only worthy missile are the 2 magics 2 currently.
So having only Magic 1 will be a really strong nerf : other planes at 11.0 still have :

  • more rear aspect IR missile and better radar missiles, like the JA37C, F4E and EJ
  • just a lot of all aspect IR missiles, like the MiG 21bis, Su22M4, Su17M4
  • just really strong flight performance, like the J7E, together with good radar missiles for the J8B

We can see that a Mirage F1C with Magic 1 at 11.0 would be lackluster.

if you get the F1 to 11.0 and need a new 11.3, the Mirage 2000C-S3 is a better option : same firepower than the current F1 with a better airframe and engine.

So i think that the Mirage F1 M53 is currently 11.0 material, same as the current Mirage F1C

1 Like

Good point, I completely forgot that this aircraft would in fact not have access to the magic 2 missile. That makes it a tradeoff between magic 2 and much improved performance.
I must note that I never really intended the M53 to be a researchable vehicle, as you mentioned, the 2000C S3 would probably be a better fit there due to having access to magic 2.