We’re basically getting an early La-5F

In the last developer update it was announced that a new technology had been added to the game that would allow modifications to include new engine options and that the first two instances of this would be the FW190A-5/U17 with a 1.65ATA boosted engine and an La-5 with a M-82F engine. We’re basically getting an early series La-5F.

La-5? La-5F? What’s the difference?

Russian aircraft series production tended to introduce new changes on the line incrementally with small updates being added in each batch. It makes tracking the history of Russian aircraft fairly challenging at times. Though everything I had read previously suggested that the major changes of the La-5 series that lead to the La-5F happened at the same time, the latest information I’ve read suggests otherwise.

Han confirmed that we would be seeing what amounts to an early La-5F.

Yes, earliest La-5F have had only engine modification, 3 fuel tanks and no skirting comes later. Tear-drop canoly comes only from series 26.

So what we’ll be seeing is essentially the same aircraft as the La-5 Series 8 that we have currently but with an engine swap.

la5-closeup2.jpg

Those familiar with the La-5 series know that later changes came in the form of a cut down rear fuselage and bubble style canopy. This allowed for significantly better rear view. What I didn’t know is that the engine changes preceded other design changes making our new higher powered La-5 a historically accurate update.

la-5comparison.jpg

What is actually changing

The conventional La-5 Series 8 that we have right now has an unlimited 2400 RPM, 950 mm Hg rating with boosted power up to 5 minutes also at 2400 RPM but with 1140 mm Hg of boost pressure.

Nominal (unlimited time): 2400 RPM, 950 mm Hg
Boosted power (up to 5 minutes): 2400 RPM, 1140 mm Hg

Source: Aircraft Flight and Technical Specifications and Operational Details

The difference with this upgraded engine comes from this week’s developer update:

…the new La-5 modification that we’ll add is M-82F engine that can work in 2400 RPM mode with 1140 mmHg pressure for an unlimited amount of time.

So while the engine doesn’t really become any more powerful on its own, what it can do is sustain a higher pressure and therefore higher speeds for a more prolonged period of time. This keeps the La-5 competitive in Battle of Kuban operations and will probably be the most capable aircraft to be used for chasing down the ground attack FW190A-5/U17 with 1.65ATA.

Opening possibilities

This also opens up a variety of possibilities for other aircraft in the future. A Bf109G-2 with 1.42ATA available boost? A P-40E-1 with far less restrictive engine settings? A Yak-1 or Yak-7 with the earlier M-105PA engine and less power? These all now become at least possible though don’t expect too many to arrive in a short period of time. Building these alternate engine models takes developer time (probably more than we would expect).

The word from Jason Williams on this new feature was fast in arriving on the forums:

This was something we were able to squeeze in. We do not have ample time to make lots of engine mods like you are asking. Even these require much work and adds time to our already tight schedule. It is unlikely we will have time to make anything further this year in regards to engine modifications..

Read Jason’s response and a whole thread talking about the La-5 and other engine swapping possibilities.

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