This 1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk Would Have Been Great in the War

One of the most recognizable airplanes of the Second World War is without a doubt the British-made Spitfire. But there were other winged machines elsewhere perhaps equally as potent, that could have risen to the height of glory had things played out differently.
1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk 6 photos
1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk1955 de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk
The de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk is one of those others, an airplane nicknamed by a group of authors The Poor Man’s Spitfire in the namesake book published in 2009. It came to be just after the war ended, in 1947, thus missed out on its chance at glory in the skies over the world’s battlefields.

The Chipmunk was designed as a two-seater aircraft that ended up being used primarily for training purposes. The Canadians from de Havilland made close to 1,300 of them between 1947 and 1956, and their were deployed by the Air Forces of over 20 countries, including Iraq, the UK, or Zambia.

There were a number of variants of the plane made, but generally the Chipmunks came with a top speed of 138 mph (222 kph) and had a range of 259 miles (417 km). Being designed mostly as a trainer, they lacked any armaments.

Some, like the people over in Portugal, took it upon themselves to build licensed versions of the plane. The one we have here, wearing the Royal Air Force markings, is one of those about 60 Portuguese-built Chipmunks and, we’re told, “one of the very few remaining flying examples.”

This particular plane rolled off the lines in 1955 and served with the Portuguese Airforce as a trainer, before being retired and stored for an undisclosed number of years. It somehow made its way to the UK in 2007, where it entered a five-year-long restoration process.

Now the de Havilland DHC-1 Chipmunk is for sale on Platinum Fighters, going for £95,000, or the equivalent of $131,000 at today’s exchange rates.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.


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