The most numerous mark of Spitfire, the V had the fuselage strengthened and Merlin 45, 46, 50, 55 or 56 engine (1,440 hp, Merlin 45). The V came with three different armament fittings : VA had eight Browning machine guns, VB had two cannons and four machine guns , VC introduced four 20mm cannons. Some mark Vs had “clipped” wings and modified engines for better low altitude performance. The V was the first Spitfire able to take a drop tank to increase its range and many were equipped to take bombs, usually either 250 or 500 lb types. Until the Mk V all Spitfires were used for defence of the U.K. Sent overseas the Spitfire often had to have an unsightly dust filter modification that spoilt performance but saved the engine from damage. Introduced in 1941 the Mk V outclassed the Messerschmitt 109E and held its own against the later 109F but was itself outperformed by the Focke-Wulf 190, which began to appear in 1941. Mk V max speed : 369 mph. Range : 480 miles. Ceiling : 37,000 ft. Production: VA = 94, VB = 3,923 , VC =2,447.