In early 1943, Germany began work on theX-4, a wire-guided air-to-air missile designed to help German fightersknock down Allied bombers that were beyond the range of their guns. TheX-4 was designed to be dropped from a fighter's wing or bomber's bomb bay,then be guided toward its target via electronic signals sent through wiresthat spun out of the blisters located on two of the missile's four wing-tips.The missile was considered operational in early 1945, but the bombing ofthe BMW plant that was producing the rocket engines coupled with moneyand labor problems resulting from Germany's military collapse ultimatelyresulted in the X-4 never seeing combat. Still, history recognizes theX-4 as the first wire-guided missile.
Wire-guided missiles remain common, evenin this high-tech age. Examples includes the French SS11 and SS12 anti-tankmissiles, and the European MILAN anti-aircraft rocket. The benefit of wire-guidedmissiles is that they're relatively cheap to produce and are invulnerableto electronic countermeasures.
foto and model by Rick Geithmann
Our X4 kit is in1/12 scale, a commonscale for desktop missiles. A base is include and some "special"bases featuring a Luftwaffe eagle have been released in a special series.