This is the definitive history of the Ilyushin Il-2 Sturmovik and provides detailed coverage on every aspect of this famous warplane. This is perhaps the most famous aircraft in the history of Russian and Soviet aviation. During World War 2 this rugged ground attack aircraft was arguably the Soviets’ most effective weapon. Protected by its heavy armor, the low-flying aircraft was incredibly difficult to shoot down, and its powerful array of weaponry included a cannon, machine guns, rockets, and special HEAT antitank bombs. It was capable of penetrating the armor of every German tank in the field at the time, including the Panther and Tiger tanks, as well as reaping destruction among the ranks of enemy infantry on the ground. The Il-2 was so successful that the design was produced in greater numbers than any other military aircraft in history, with over 40,000 being built between 1941 and 1955.