Westland Wyvern

The Westland Wyvern was a British single-seat carrier-based multi-role strike Aircraft that served in the 1950s, seeing active service in the 1956 Suez Crisis.

Production Wyverns were powered by a turboprop engine driving large and distinctive contra-rotating propellers, and could carry aerial torpedoes.


W.34 Wyvern

Six prototypes ordered in August 1944, with the first aircraft flown 12 December 1946.

Powered by the Rolls-Royce Eagle Mk 22 H-block, piston engine.

W.34 Wyvern TF.1

Pre-production aircraft ordered in June 1946, with only seven built of 20 contracted due to the cancellation of the Eagle power plant.

W.35 Wyvern TF.2

The original production version, powered by the Armstrong Siddeley Python turboprop in replacement of the discontinued Eagle piston powerplant seen on the W.34 prototypes.

Three prototypes were ordered in February 1946 with a production contract for 20 aircraft issued in September 1947.

Only nine production aircraft were built, and the remaining eleven were completed as S.4s.

In 1949, a prototype Westland Wyvern TF.2 on a test flight crashed into houses in Yeovil, resulting in the death of four people, including the pilot.

W.38 Wyvern T.3

Two-seat conversion trainer.

One prototype serial VZ739 was ordered in September 1948 and first flown in February 1950.

W.35 Wyvern TF.4

The definitive version.

50 were ordered in October 1948, 13 in December 1950, 13 in January 1951 and a final 11 in February 1951.

A total of 98 built (including 11 that had started as TF.2s).

The model was later redesignated as the S.4.



1 (2 in T.3)


42 ft 3 in (12.88 m)


44 ft 0 in (13.41 m) (folded 20 ft (6 m)


15 ft 9 in (4.80 m) (folded 20 ft (6 m)

Wing area

355 sq ft (33.0 m2)

Empty weight

15,600 lb (7,076 kg)

Gross weight

21,200 lb (9,616 kg)

Max take-off weight

24,550 lb (11,136 kg)


1 × Armstrong Siddeley Python turboprop engine, 3,560 hp (2,650 kW) +1,100 lbf (4.893 kN) residual thrust


4-bladed Rotol contra-rotating, 13 ft (4.0 m) diameter


Maximum speed

383 mph (616 km/h, 333 kn) at sea level, 380 mph (612 km/h) at 10,000 ft (3,048 m)


910 mi (1,460 km, 790 nmi)

Service ceiling

28,000 ft (8,500 m)

Rate of climb

2,350 ft/min (11.9 m/s)

Wing loading

59.7 lb/sq ft (291 kg/m2)


0.194 eshp/lb



4 × 20mm British Hispano Mk.V cannon, 2 in each wing


16 × RP-3 under wing rockets


1 × Mk.15 or Mk.17 torpedo


Up to 3,000 lb (1,361 kg) of bombs or mines.



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