The Kawanishi N1K1 was one of few successful fighter floatplanes to be designed and constructed. However, by the time it entered service the role for which it had been designed no longer existed and less than 100 were manufactured.
In September 1940 the Japanese Navy issued specifications for a floatplane fighter capable of supporting offensive naval operations.
The resulting Kawanishi aeroplane was almost as fast and manoeuvrable as the land based Mitsubishi A6M (Zero).
The prototype flew in May 1942 but necessary modifications meant production aeroplanes did not become available until July 1943 and it was not declared operationally ready until October 1943.
By then Japan was on the defensive so there was little need for the N1K1 and only 97 were manufactured. They only saw limited action and made no important contribution to the course of the war.
This model represents a production N1K1.
High Planes 1/72 kit. Completed in September 2000.