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Grumman “Eastern” FM-2 Wildcat

Past Visitor
Designed in 1939, the Grumman Wildcat was America’s most capable naval fighter in the battles of the Coral Sea, Midway, and Guadalcanal. By exploiting its advantages of firepower and armor, and using advanced tactics, the Wildcat competed successfully against the faster and more agile Japanese Zero.

The FM-1 Wildcat evolved with Eastern and Grumman collaborating on the new FM-2 Wildcat design, which was required by the USN for its “Jeep” or Escort Carriers. The FM-2 Wildcat was the most numerous and best performing Wildcat with 1,350 horsepower, bigger vertical tail surfaces and more fuel capacity, earning the name the “Wilder Wildcat.”

FM-2 Wildcat Specifications

  • Built:
    Original construction in 1943, Linden, NJ
  • Engine:
    Wright R-1820-56
    1350 HP
  • Propeller:
    Curtiss 3 Blade
  • Armament:
    4x .5 caliber machine guns
    2x 250 lb bombs or 6x 5-in rockets
  • Length: 28’9″
  • Height: 10′
  • Wingspan: 38′
  • Empty Weight: 5,448 lbs
  • Gross Weight: 8,271 lbs
  • Range: 900 miles
  • Service Ceiling: 34,000 ft
  • Max Speed: 332 mph
  • Max Cruise: 164 mph