Q-5L and its weaponary

Correct. Nose sensor is the biggest give away. Curious as to what model the 2nd photo is. It doesn’t seem to have any RWR upgrades seen even on the Q-5IA (this is when the RWR is upgraded to include sensors on the nose to get 360 coverage). Wonder if this could be a Q-5I or perhaps a Q-5III? Anyone got any more information on it? Could be very useful if this is a Q-5I because it would show AAM compatibility for the Q-5IA model (Q-5IA based off of Q-5I).

I think it is incorrect to prove by A5C (Q5III) that Q5L can carry AAM. According to page 81, the Q5L is an upgraded version of the Q5C(Q5II), while the A5C (Q5III) is an improved version for Pakistan’s needs, and the two do not belong to the same technical route. The improved AAM carrying model mentioned on page 115 refers to the Q5III (A5C) rather than the Q5II (Q5C). The Q5C (Q5II) cannot carry AAM and the improved entry on page 81 does not mention carrying AAM.

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Where did you find this book? I’ve been looking for it forever and people refused to send it to me. I can provide a detailed translation. Here are the gist of it:

In order to improve the survivability of the aircraft on battlefields, Type 941 chaff/flare dispensers were equipped starting from Q-5IA as an integral part of the aircraft’s EW suite.

This picture is the Type 941 dispenser. Each dispenser contains 32 shots.

Type 941 chaff/flare dispenser consists of a controller and a certain amount of launch tubes, the controller determines the type, amount, timing and delays of the countermeasures deployed according to the targets identified by the RWR. Countermeasures can be dispensed manually, programmed (the aforementioned automatic deployment), or via emergency deployment.

Apart from LGBs, the Q-5L is capable of carrying modern domestic air-to-ground guided munitions. As the domestic research and development progresses, a wave of lightweight, high accuracy laser guided bombs, TV guided bombs, guided glide bombs and compact air to ground missiles were successfully developed, completely changing the limited guided armament of one LS-500J LGB per middle (heavyweight) pylon. The inboard and outboard (lightweight) pylons are now capable of carrying these smaller AGMs, significantly increasing the Q-5L’s suspended armament, improving its combat capabilities and mission versatility.

Q-5’s primary purpose is ground attack, therefore its A2A capabilities were limited. Apart from dogfighting with the autocannons, in order to further increase its self-defence A2A capabilities, air to air missiles were added on the wing tip pylons (technically outboard pylons, not wingtips) of the Q-5III (A-5C) and other improved variants. Due to the lack of an onboard radar, only infrared AAMs such as the PL-5, PL,-7, Magics or Sidewinders were used, and it’s incapable of launching radar-guided missiles.


The Q-5IA happened simultaneously as the A-5C upgrade. The A-5C program was meant as a foreign trade version of the Q-5 based off the Q-5I. Particularly the modification design for the A-5C was carried out under the same standards for Q-5IA. They shared the same base requirements but the A-5C had additional requirements set forth by Pakistan. This is why we see a lot of the subsystems that were first introduced on the Q-5IA also on the A-5C; the programs were not mutually exclusive and improved Q-5’s often built off of the past programs. This is why the document says improved Q-5’s can carry AAM’s and gives an non-limiting example as the A-5C. This is also why the Q-5IA is not able to carry AAM’s. But instead it is here, at the Q-5IA where many of the other improved Q-5 variants are built off of and all have access to the technology developed and used in the A-5C program. Furthermore it is commonplace in these books to not include every feature of each variant, it covers what is done differently. Such as the Q-5IA upgrading the RWR system to be 360 coverage over the Q-5I’s tail only coverage. As such, at the critical junction of the A-5C development and onwards, there is no further need to specify each and every variant of Q-5 can carry AAM’s because it was already established that they are able to carry the domestic Pl-5 in the A-5C program. As just one more example of one program taking from another, take the flares on the A-5C for example. The Q-5IA led the development for countermeasures and the A-5C took what had already worked there and reproduced them for the A-5C program and then modified the design to fit the clients demands for usage of the GT-1 flare pod instead of the Type 941.

Thanks for the translations! I got access to these books by another forum user. here’s the link to the drive with them: Microsoft OneDrive - Access files anywhere. Create docs with free Office Online.

If this does not work, here is a link to the forum post with a link to the drive that does work: Q-5L Missing Countermeasures & Visual Model Inaccuracies - China - War Thunder - Official Forum

But there are no photographs showing that the PLAAF Q5 is equipped with AAM.

the missiles are probably just there for show, many militaries do that to display aircraft

The wiring however should still be available, the IA model had missile capability and if you think about it it should really still be available for the L/N ( especially the N since it’s based off the D)

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Think you are right about that one in the photo, none of the sources I’ve ever read on the Q-5 mentioned being compatible with Pl-8’s. And looking at the pylons they are mounted to, they look less of like a pylon more as just something attached to make it hold it.

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Photographic evidence does not disclude the capability to use them. You will find no photos of a USAF F-5C with flare pods, yet it could still mount them and thus has them in game. It is not surprising that their is no photos of AAM’s on the Q-5’s by the PLAAF, we only really got to see the later improved variants from an occasional flyby or as a demonstration aircraft where they only equipped what they planned to demo, namely guided bombs for Q-5L’s with rocket pods to show it has guided weaponry capability and unguided close up ground strike abilities.

I think the best way to look at which Q-5’s have the capability to mount AAM’s is to see which has the ability to mount the 3rd, lighter outer wing pylon, sometimes referred to as the wingtip pylon. This is the pylon that carries AAM’s, unguided rocket pods, and 250-3 dumb bombs. The Q-5IA and prior variants do NOT have this ability and even some variants after the IA do not either. The Q-5L, which is the one in question, DOES have access to using this pylon. The pylon itself is already capable of supporting AAM’s because it was the same ones designed and used in the A-5C program.


What you are saying is all based on your speculation, the article you provided only proves that the Q5III is integrated with AAM, not that the Q5II and its improved variants are equipped with AAM. If you are going to prove that any other Q5 is capable of carrying AAM then you should at least find accurate documentation or photographs.

The source proves that OTHER improved variants besides the A-5C can mount AAM’s. And we’ve gone over this, Q-5IA is not considered an improved variant, it is the base for multiple improved variants like the Q-5L. I further outlined that it is common place within the entirety of the Q-5 program that even though the base may be different for one variant, it isn’t uncommon to receive the same upgrades from an older variant as part of an improvement. If you actually read the document which details the many other types of Q-5’s and their development, you would’ve noticed this. But yet in the text they mention how the Q-5L outer (wingtip) and inner light pylons can mount rocket pods. This was a change, yet it wasn’t mentioned despite being new for this variant. The only reason it was mentioned at all in the text was because they were describing how 2 laser guided bombs was a limited ordnance and that these other pylons can be used to enhance it’s ground strike abilities. This ability was taken directly from past Q-5 programs and used on the Q-5L. Furthermore the A-5C program already established the wingtip pylons are wired for Pl-5 compatibility.

But since you are appear to be a US main, lets flip the script. There is no photos of USAF F-5C’s with flares. Know why that is? The countermeasure pod wasn’t developed until AFTER plane was withdrawn from services. Here’s a forum post discussing this inconsistency: F-5C Flares need to be removed. It is FITCIONAL - #12 by MiG_23M In THEORY it could mount them with a conversion, therefore it was deemed it could get them in game.

I have provided a stronger reasoning on why the Q-5L can carry AAM’s than the US F-5C getting flare pods that didn’t exist throughout it’s entire service. If the AAM’s get denied, then I’m afraid the US F-5C, F-5A, etc are gonna need there flare pods to be removed.


Your guess is just based on what you think the improved options for the Q5III were also added to the Q5II. However, the information you sent only indicates that the Q5III received this modification, and does not indicate that the Q5II received the same upgrade. It was also not possible to find any photographs of PLAAF Q5s carrying AAM.
Similarly, I think it is acceptable for F5C to remove CMD.

My “guess” or logic is that 1) other variants deemed as ‘improved’ can carry AAM’s 2) the Q-5L directly takes the wingtip pylons from other improved variants despite the IA base not having them nor was it part of the L program development 3) these wing tip pylons have the same capabilities as the ones used for the A-5C

But outside of of getting the PLAAF to make a statement on this or Nanchang providing information (neither will happen) this is the best information available that we have to work with. Gaijin has made it a point where they will add capabilities to aircraft that theoretically can equip them, that is what I am making this case for with the AAM’s.

You disagreeing with Gaijins take on adding theoretical capabilities is entirely valid but that is an issue you would have to petition for them to reverse.

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I’m just trying to help the community have the best chance of being successful with the report. I can’t speak to decisions made on other aircraft as I don’t make them haha.


Image found captioned as Q-5 prototype

Image found captioned as with an anti-ship missile

Anybody have any further information on these images I dug up? The first one is very interesting, looks like a Pl-2 and with the original variant prototype. That would support some peoples claims that all Q-5’s, even before the Q-5III (A-5C) development.


First of all the people over in the Tornado thread showed with evidence that the Tornado is capable of carring GBUs there and it wasnt applied by using “logic”, second the PSO doesnt have its addon armor because they denied it, but it should have, and the people in the PSO thread also proved that, and again not by using “logic”. And they, in both cases, had more evidence then here in the case of the Q-5L.

The others I do agree with tho.

I hope you guys who reported my post for being “off-topic” report the post I was replying to aswell, or youre all abusing the reporting system, just classic.

The top image was the original wooden mockup for the very first Q-5 design called Xiong Ying 302, built by personnel from both Shenyang and Nanchang. It wasn’t an actual aircraft so that can’t serve as a proof of all Q-5s can fire AAMs.

The bottom image was supposed to be a prototype AGM and NOT a YJ-8X series AShM as much as the Chinese internet sources loves to claim. The 1970s Q-5Yi was supposed to carry the predecessor of the YJ-8X/C801 series called the YJ-8K, but was cancelled when JH-7 was commissioned as the future AShM carrier [1]. The aircraft in picture is clearly not a Q-5Yi as the sole prototype was scrapped ages ago and featured a slanted nose with a radar. The missile also looks too small to be a YJ-8X series missile.

Here’s the same plane from another angle:
According to the description from the Chinese Aircraft Encyclopedia, this was the Q-5E prototype that carries two unnamed laser guided bombs, first flown in 1999. The Q-5F laser guidance aircraft with the targeting pod first flew in 2000. The idea was to employ buddy lasing with one or more Q-5F carrying drop tanks guiding LGBs dropped from multiple Q-5Es also carrying drop tanks, as equipping both the bombs and a targeting pod would mean a significant reduction in combat radius. The bombs were said to be shelved when development wrapped up in 2004 [2]. It was replaced by the Q-5L which first flew later in the same year and carried both the pod and LGBs.

However, the other book claims that this was a Q-5F laser guidance aircraft, carrying two unnamed AGMs in place of the extra fuel tanks [3], and that the Q-5E was actually carrying the LT-2/LS-500J that was later used on the Q-5L/N variants, not some prototype LGB.
This book also claimed that the Q-5E was painted in a tricolor camouflage while the Q-5F was unpainted and remained in primer yellow on page 133, further backing up its claim.

Indeed, we can find an actual image of the Q-5E with the LT-2/LS-500J here:

So I’m inclined to think that it was indeed some sort of prototype AGMs. The warhead also resembles a transparent seeker window.

[1] Chinese Aircraft Encyclopedia, Page 145
[2] Chinese Aircraft Encyclopedia, Page 157-158
[3] 东风乍起-中国强-5强击机传纪, Page 79


Bonus: Here’s a Q-5 (probably a Q-5L judging from the white livery) carrying a 250kg FT-6 gliding guided bomb with a claimed max range of 80km. Obviously it was an inert for accuracy testing and it was 4.5m off the target.

If the claim below from 东风乍起-中国强-5强击机传纪 is correct, then all 3 sets of wing pylons can carry these lightweight guided ordinances:

The inboard and outboard (lightweight) pylons are now capable of carrying these smaller AGMs, significantly increasing the Q-5L’s suspended armament, improving its combat capabilities and mission versatility.

Here are some photos for the FT-series guided bombs:



It is noticed and greatly appreciated. Thank you

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