Built by 1st Army Air Arsenal, estimated date of completion April 1943. This aircraft was the assault version. Delivered to the Japanese Army Air Force (JAAF). Assigned to the 26th Sentai, 3rd Chutai. Painted with gray motted upper surfaces.
During 1943, this aircraft operated from Lae Airfield until abandoned placed atop fuel drums near the runway with the wings removed.
During late September 1943, this aircraft was among the Japanese aircraft captured at Lae Airfield. This was the only Sonia investigated 'pro forma' by Allied Technical Intelligence Unit (ATIU). No markings were noted. Ultimate fate unknown, likely scrapped or otherwise disappeared.
Production Record of the Type 99 Assault / Recon Plane by Jim Long
CEAR (Crashed Enemy Aircraft Report) No.17
notes a total of at least 80 wrecks, including: 1 Ki-51
Jim Long adds "CEAR #17, where it was reported to have been the reconnaissance model, and on JAPMC #s 2357, 2360, and 2497, where it was reported to have been a light bomber, which would be equal to the assault version."
Thanks to Jim Long for additional information
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January 9, 2018