The Jet Misteb
The Mistel story proceeded into the jet age. Design M 4 juggled a Ju 88/Me 262 combination. The idea was soon scrapped by OKL. The Ju 88 was to have had an additional pair of jet turbines under the wings guzzling fuel for poor range. Top speed would have been greater than the various Ju 88 M 3 combinations, but the decisive factor against it was the desperate need for jet fighters to defend the Reich.
The Mistel M 5 and M 6 proposed by Junkers in January 1945 pointed to the ease of interception of the relatively slow combinations even over the Eastern Front and so advocated a jet fighter as the guidance aircraft. The Ju 88 would either have two turbines or none. These modern Mistel would have a range of 1,600 kilometres (1,000 miles) and a speed up to 820 km/hr at 6,000 metres (510 mph at 20,000 ft), providing invulnerability to some extent from Russian fighter attack. Work on the combination began in the late summer of 1944. The intended armament was a 2-tonne bomb with thick casing for use against merchant ships up to 15,000 tons, or with thin casing and additional flammable liquids for use against ground targets.
On 7 December 1944 Arado completed the design specifications for the Ar E 377/E 377a bomb using an Ar 234 bomber as control aircraft. Since the range of 1,300 kilometres and the speed of 720 km/hr (447 mph) at 6,000 metres was less than the M 5, the Ar 234 idea was rejected. In any case these bombers were needed for long range reconnaissance work with KG 76. Another idea using an Me 262 A-la as the guidance aircraft and a utility machine filled with a very explosive mixture was worked on at the beginning of 1945 but never realised.