Best Allied Bombers of World War II


The Top Ten

1 Avro Lancaster - UK

By far the best bomber of the war. Carried a comparable bomb load to the B-29 years earlier. It took more than two B-17s to carry a comparable load into Germany.

I had

The Lanc dropped more bombs than any other plane in ww2,

2 Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress - USA

This thing was a legend in its own time.

They are known to be the heavy bombers

I was always fascinated by this aircraft since I was 9.
And it is my most favourite airplane!

3 de Havilland Mosquito - UK

Astonishing how underestimated this aircraft was!

A truly great aircraft! Versatile, adaptable, faster than any other bomber and established "path finding" for the bigger bombers with there blanket bombing.

The Brits should've made more of these aircraft for greater accuracy bombing and other duties, but at the time mass numbers of British, Commonwealth and US heavy bombers were seen as more feasible and greater in destruction.

The bomb load was almost identical to the Flying Fortress, but it was not until later on did the path finding start to be used and prove to be so effective.

The greatest bomber in my view, but these are others that can be held in high esteem:

Lancaster (adaptable, surprisingly agile and greater bomb load)
Flying Fortress (took so much punishment and still flew)
Super fortress (later in the war was ahead of it's time)

Often overlooked is the fact that this was the first aircraft built using composite materials - very thin (3/32") ply skins, balsa core (8-10mm), exterior tensile skin of doped fine linen. It required a complete network of thin copper foil strips on the inner surface to provide electric earths!

The only aircraft capable of making daylight, accurate, bombing attacks without suffering crippling losses. what more do you want from a bomber (which also made a great night-fighter)

Beautiful any which way you look

4 Consolidated B-24 Liberator - USA
5 North American B-25 Mitchell - USA
6 Fairey Barracuda - UK
7 Douglas SBD Dauntless - USA

Tough, versatile, and popular with pilots. This plane did so well at Midway that it soon became the defining symbol of the war against Japan. And unlike the Stuka and Val dive bombers, the SBD could perform well even when the Americans did not have air superiority, as evidenced by its successes in early 1942 and at Guadalcanal. Okay, the Stuka had the loud dive brakes and the 37mm cannon, but the SBD had the bomb load, defensive armament, range, and aircrew to cripple the Japanese Navy. Both the Stuka and the Val were torn to shreds by RAF and USN fighters, but the SBD performed well against the Zero fighter and was used against torpedo bombers early in the war. Pilots loved the SBD so much that they had to be coerced into switching to the SB2C.

8 Grumman TBF Avenger - USA
9 Vickers Wellington - UK

My favourite bomber of the war, the Wellington was a great torpedo bomber though lacked ability to carry heavy bombs and was viewed outdated as soon as the Lancaster and Halifax were released.

10 Martin B-26 Marauder - USA

A medium sized bomber that was fast and could take a lot of damage. It was actually built at the point that America entered the war. Plus, my Grandfather flew 67 missions over occupied France, including 2 missions on D-day in the Marauder.

The Contenders

11 Boeing B-29 Superfortress

B-29 striking back. Prepare for nuclear attack.

They're all great bomber but only one ended the war for America, the Superfortress. Also one of the first aircraft to feature primative computers and pressurization and capable of delivering the A-Bomb.

This plane almost single-handedly ended the war in the Pacific. It had a range, speed, armament, ceiling, and size that blew everything else out of the water.

12 Fairey Swordfish - UK
13 Short Sunderland - UK

This giant flying boat was an awesome maritime patroller and was a good bomber too!

This was a great seaplane and bombed German supply ships and U-boats.

14 Horten Ho 229 - Nazi Germany

The first jet powered flying wing.

15 Vultee A-31 Vengeance - USA

Like the Martin Maryland/Baltimore, this aircraft had been built in the US but only used in lend-lease. The Allies wanted an equivalent of the terrifying Ju 87 Stuka and so they got the Vultee A-31 Vengeance two-seat dive-bomber. For the French and Americans, they only found it useful to relegate it for training purposes while the RAF, RAAF, and RAIF used it effectively in Burma and New Guinea. There were four British squadrons, five Australian, and two Indian. This airplane remains one the most successful but unsung heroes of the Second World War.

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