As soon as the Imperial Navy expressed its satisfaction with the performance of the Ka-14, the Imperial Army placed a contract with Mitsubishi for a modified example fundamentally similar to the second prototype for evaluation as the Ki-18. Powered by a similar Kotobuki 5 to that of the first Ka-14, the Ki-l8 introduced a longer chord engine cowling, an enlarged rudder and larger mainwheels and spats. Tested throughout the autumn and winter of 1935, the Ki-18 carried the standard twin 7,7-mm gun armament, but was considered insufficiently agile by conservative Army test pilots, failing to gain favour. Nevertheless, the Ki-18 promoted Army acceptance of the coming demise of the biplane as a fighter configuration, resulting in the framing of a requirement for what was termed an “advanced fighter”.
Engine: Kotobuki 5
Max speed, 276 mph (445 km/h) at 10,005 ft (3050 m)
Time to 16,405 ft (5000 m), 6.43 min
Empty weight, 2,447 lb (1110 kg)
Loaded weight, 3,1351b (1422kg)
Span, 36ft l¼ in (l1,00m)
Length, 25 ft 1 1/5 in (7,65 m)
Height, 10 ft 4 in (3,15 m)
Wing area, 191.6 sq ft (17,80 sq.m)
Armament: twin 7,7-mm gun.