Eric M. "Winkle" Brown, British test pilot, said about the Grumman Wildcat that this fighter was one of the finest shipboard aeroplanes ever created.
This Wildcat is a FM-2 version produced by Eastern Aircraft, General Motors. The letter "M" in the aircraft's designation is the company code for Eastern Aircraft Division of General Motors.
This fighter version was optimized for small-carrier operations, with a more powerful engine (the 1,350 hp (1,010 kW) Wright R-1820-56), a taller tail to cope with the torque, and four gun armament with increased ammunition capacity.
Most FM-2s were used in the Atlantic, operating from escort carriers involved in convoy protection and antisubmarine operations. Tasked with supporting ground forces off Leyte, sorely under-armed aircraft from escort carriers such as Gambier Bay in the "Taffy" task groups found themselves up against a major surface fleet, which they helped turn back in the Battle off Samar. Four FM-2 Wildcats fromShamrock Bay's Composite Squadron 94 (VC-94) helped shoot down a number of kamikaze aircraft attacking Laffey off Okinawa before running out of ammunition.
Courtesy Aircraft Sales offers for sale this great warbird. This FM-2 Wildcat on sale has only 188 hours since outstanding restoration! Garmin avionics, redlines and is sold with a fresh annual & transponder inspection! Exterior painting VC 13 North Atlantic Scheme with Stars and Bars in excellent condition. In interior, outstanding military style restoration with most all stock control heads, including gunsight.
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