New owners for German 109Gs

Bf 109G-6 D-FMBB being flown by Walter Eichhorn at the ILA Berlin Air Show in 2006.
Two-seat Bf 109G-12 D-FMGZ, now part of the Flugmuseum Messerschmitt fleet, airborne with Merlin power in 2017.

The Flugmuseum Messerschmitt announced on 17 December that it has sold its Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6, D-FMBB, and acquired the two-seat Bf 109G-12, D-FMGZ, from the Hangar 10 collection in its place.

The Manching, Bavariabased Flugmuseum — operated jointly by the Messerschmitt Stiftung and the Airbus Group — said in a statement that the decision to sell the Bf 109G-6 had been made in order to relieve its engineering burden. D-FMBB has been acquired by an as yet unnamed German purchaser.

The Bf 109G-12, meanwhile, has been operating for some time with Rolls-Royce Merlin power instead of a Daimler- Benz DB605. Having the two-seater on the Flugmuseum Messerschmitt strength will, the organisation says, improve opportunities for Bf 109 pilot training. The museum’s statement added that, to further ease the engineering load, the G-12 will continue to be operated by the Hangar 10 team from its base at Heringsdorf airfield on the north-east German island of Usedom.

Bf 109G-6 D-FMBB has not flown since 2007, when it went into a period of engine maintenance after participating in the filming of Valkyrie. Still on the Flugmuseum Messerschmitt fleet of Bf 109 variants alongside the newly acquired G-12 are Bf 109G-4 D-FWME and Bf 109G-12 D-FDME, both Daimler-Benz-engined conversions of HA-1112-M1L Buchóns. Ben Dunnell


Jaguar GR1A XX741 being readied for taxiing at Bentwaters on 15 December.

SEPECAT Jaguar GR1A XX741 moved under its own power for the first time in 24 years at the Bentwaters Cold War Museum in Suffolk on 15 December, following a nine-year restoration. During brakes-on ground runs both Rolls-Royce/Turbomeca Adour 104 engines ran up to maximum reheat, after which XX741 made a short run to prove the aircraft’s braking and nosewheel steering systems. The next stage of the project will be to refit all panels and install pylons and drop tanks.

Built at Warton, XX741 made its first flight on 4 October 1974 and was delivered to the RAF the following month. It initially flew with No 226 Operational Conversion Unit at Lossiemouth, and then moved to No 54 Squadron at Coltishall. After transfer to No 6 Squadron, it arrived at Thumrait, Oman on 11 August 1990 as part of the initial deployment for the Gulf War, although it was soon to return to Coltishall and did not fly any missions during the conflict. It subsequently went back to the OCU in its No 16 (Reserve) Squadron guise.

On 31 January 1994 the machine flew from Lossiemouth to Shawbury where it went into storage with 4,260 hours on the clock. Sold to Everett Aero of Sproughton, Suffolk in November 2005, it was acquired by the Bentwaters museum in October 2009.