Heinkel He 162
Popularly called 'Volksjäger' (People's Fighter) or Salamander, the incredible Heinkel He 162 left behind so many conflicting impressions it is hard to believe the whole program was started and finished in a little more than six months. Born out of despiration the drawings of the He 162 was ready on 30 October 1944 and the first prototype flew 37 days later. Plans for a massive production of up to 4000 units per month was put into place. As experienced aircrew had nearly all been killed, Hitler Youth were hastily trained in primary gliders before being strapped into the new jet. Despite extreme difficulties, 300 of various sub-types had been completed by VE-day, with 800 more on the assembly line. I/JG1 was operational at Leck, though without fuel Despite many bad characteristics the He 162 was a fighter of a futuristic kind designed and created in quantity far quicker than modern aircraft are even drawn on paper. Source: Profile: German Warplanes of World War II Published by Temple Press/Aerospace Info: Fighting Aircraft of World War II Published by Salamander Books.