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Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 "(Fishbed)"

Supersonic Fighter/Interceptor

Cold War Veteran Remains a Threat.

Cost-effectiveness and high-performance has kept the Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 'Fishbed' a viable fighter/interceptor/attacker over today's technologically-heavy battlefield. The supersonic aircraft began life as a short-ranged interceptor and blossomed to become a Cold War success story with over 60 nations at one time or another making use of the type. Production matched its popularity with totals surpassing 10,500 units. Introduced at the end of the 1950s, the MiG-21 was an evolution of the MiG line of jets debuting in the Korean War (1950-1953) and went on to become a bridge design between the MiG-19 and all-modern MiG-29. Modernization has kept the MiG-21 a threat to be reckoned with today.
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Mission Roles

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Anywhere and Everywhere

The MiG-21 'Fishbed' series proved hugely popular in its heyday, taken on by the massive Soviet Air Force, Eastern Bloc nations, and a plethora of Arab operators. This led to impressive production totals which were padded by local manufacture in China (unlicensed), Czechoslovakia, and India.

Versatile Weapons Platform

While initially appearing as an all-gun platform, the MiG-21 was quickly developed to operate existing Soviet air-to-air missiles and, later, surface-attack weapons like TV-guided bombs.

Interceptor at Heart

Delta-wings and powerful afterburning engine gave the MiG-21 series exceptional performance, able to fly at twice the speed of sound. This made the platform an excellent interceptor, particularly when armed with missiles.

Twin-Seat Aerial Classroom

To bring potential airmen up to speed, the MiG-21 was evolved to become a twin-seat trainer as well, the supersonic nature of the design necessitating a specialized focus on high-speed flight.


Active, In-Service (65 yrs)
Mikoyan-Gurevich - Soviet Union; Avia - Czechoslovakia
11,496 Units
61 Total

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Afghanistan; Algeria; Angola; Azerbaijan; Bangladesh; Belarus; Bulgaria; Burkina Faso; Cambodia; China; Croatia; Cuba; Czechoslovakia; Czech Republic; Egypt; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Finland; Georgia; Germany (East); Germany (Modern); Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Hungary; India; Indonesia; Iran; Iraq; Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan; ISIL; Kyrgyzstan; Laos; Libya; Madagascar; Mali; Mongolia; Mozambique; Namibia; Nigeria; North Korea; Poland; Republic of the Congo; Romania; Russia; Serbia; Serbia and Montenegro; Slovakia; Somalia; Soviet Union; Sudan; Syria; Tanzania; Turkmenistan; Uganda; Ukraine; United States (evaluation/aggressor); Vietnam; Yemen; Yugoslavia; Zaire; Zambia

(List includes former, current, and potential operating nations)
MiG-21bis: 1 x Tumansky R-25-300 afterburning turbojet engine developing 9,030lb of dry thrust and 15,640lb with reheat.

(Assuming optimal flying/environmental conditions)
Maximum Speed
1,392 mph | 2,240 kph | 1,210 kts
Service Ceiling
57,415 ft | 17,500 m | 10.87 miles
Operational Range
410 miles | 660 km | 356 nm
58,000 ft/min | 17,678 m/min
(Showcased performance statistics pertain to the MiG-21bis production model)
48.23 feet (14.70 meters)
23.62 feet (7.20 meters)
13.45 feet (4.10 meters)
(Showcased measurements pertain to the MiG-21bis production model)
11,464 lb (5,200 kg)
19,401 lb (8,800 kg)
(Showcased weights pertain to the MiG-21bis production model)
STANDARD (Fixed, Forward-Firing):
1 x 23mm Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23L internal automatic cannon (200 projectiles).

Four external hardpoints cleared for up to 4,400lb of ordnance to include:

Air-to-Air Missiles (AAMs), Air-to-Surface Missiles (ASMs), and conventional drop bombs.

K-5, K-13, R-27, R-60, R-73, R-77

Kh-21, Kh-66 'Grom', Kh-31

FAB-500 (1,100lb), KAB-500KR TV-guided, KAB-500-OD FAE (Fuel Air Explosive); KAB-500Kr-U (training bomb) Supported Types:

Automatic Cannon graphic Automatic Cannon(s)
Air-to-Air Missile graphic Air-to-Air Missiles
Air-to-Surface Missile graphic Air-to-Surface Missiles
Precision-Guided Bomb graphic Precision-Guided Bombs
Conventional Drop Bomb graphic Conventional Drop Bombs
Attack Rocket graphic Rockets / Rocket Pods
Additional Fuel Tank graphic Additional Fuel
MiG-21 ('Fishbed') - Base Series Designation.
Ye-1 - Design of 1954; Mikulin AM-5A non-afterburning turbojet engine.
Ye-2 - Prototype of 1955; Mikulin AM-9B afterburning turbojet engine.
Ye-4 - Prototype of 1955 with delta-wing planform.
Ye-50 - Prototype of 1956 with swept-wing mainplanes and intended as a high-altitude interceptor; Dushkin S-155 rocket motor; Ye-50/3 later crashed in August 1957.
Ye-50A - Prototype of 1956; revised Ye-50 model; cancelled.
Ye-5 (I-500) - Model of 1956; delta-winged planform; Mikulin AM-11 turbojet engine.
Ye-6 - Model of 1957; three examples of the MiG-21F production model.
Ye-50P - Model of 1958; Proposed high-altitude model with rocket booster; cancelled.
MiG-21 ("Fishbed-A") - Initial production version based on the Ye-5.
MiG-21F ("Fishbed-B") - Production model of 1959; Single-seat day-fighter; 1 x 30mm and 2 x 23mm cannons or 2 x 30mm cannons; 2 x Bomb hardpoints; 93 examples completed.
Ye-6T - Models of 1959-1961; MiG-21F prototypes with R11F2-300 turbojet engine; world speed/altitude record breakers.
MiG-21P-13 (Ye-7) - Model of 1958; interceptor; K-13 AAM support; two examples.
MiG-21F-13 ("Fishbed-C") - Model of 1960; short-ranged day fighter variant; 1 x 30mm cannon with K-13 missile support; unguided rocket support.
MiG-21FR - Czech production reconnaissance models.
MiG-21F-13R - Model of 1974; Bulgarian reconnaissance models.
Aero S-106 - Czech production model based in the MiG-21F-13.
J-7 - Chinese export model based in the MiG-21F-13 by Chengdu.
F-7 - Chinese export model based in the MiG-21F-13 by Chengdu.
Ye-6V ("Fishbed-E") - Experimental MiG-21F-13 used in Short Take-Off and Landing (STOL) tests; JATO rocket-equipped.
MiG-21PF ("Fishbed-D") - Model of 1961; interceptor production model; R11F2-300 turbojet engines; RP-21 radar.
MiG-21FL - Radar-equipped interceptor variant of 1965 with afterburning turbojet engine.
Type 77 - Indian license-production model of the MiG-21FL.
Ye-7SPS - Model of 1961.
MiG-21PFS - Model of 1963.
Ye-7M - Evolved Ye-7SPS prototype, becoming prototype mark for the MiG-21PFM.
MiG-21PFM - Model of 1964.

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