In 1915 Sopwith built a personal aircraft for their test pilot Harry Hawker. This aircraft a single seat biplane with a 50 hp Gnome rotary engine was soon nicknamed "Hawker's Runabout".
Four similar aircraft were built under the designation Sopwith Sparrow.
Sopwith developed the Sparrow to a somewhat larger fighter with more powerful engine and with ailerons, Sopwith Pup.
The prototype and also most production aircraft were equipped with a 80 hp LeRhone rotary engine and an armament of one synchronised Vickers .303 inch machine gun.
The prototype was finished February 1916 and made its first flight in March 1916.
The Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) ordered two other prototypes and soon a production order followed.
Sopwith was already producing 1½ Strutter and built just a few Pups.
The Royal Flying Corps ordered also large amounts of the Pup; Sopwith built 96 examples, Standard Motor Co. built 850 examples, Whitehead Aircraft built 820 examples and William Beardmore & Co built 30 Pups.
|Length:||5,9 m||Wingspan:||8,1 m|
|Height:||2,9 m||Wing area:||23,6 m2|
|Empty weight:||388 kg||Max. start weight:||556 kg|
|Max. speed:||171 km/hr||Rate of climb:||- m/min|
|Range:||3 hour||Service ceiling:||5600 m|
|Engine type:||One Le Rhône 9C rated 80 hp|
|Armament:||One fixed forward firing .303" (7,7 mm) Vickers machine gun|
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