One of four aircraft submitted in response to the “Armed Aircraft IV” specifications of February 1934. This called for a low-wing all-metal monoplane fighter, and was initially issued to Arado, Heinkel and Messerschmitt. In September 1934 Focke-Wulf was also invited to tender for the contract.
Focke-Wulf submitted the Fw 159. It was a high-wing strut braced monoplane, similar to their successful Fw 56 trainer aircraft. The prototypes were to be powered by the Jumo 210 B engine, and armed with two MG 17 machine guns located in the nose. The Fw 159 V4 reached a maximum speed of only 385 km/h (). The Fw 159 was not a serious competitor in the contest to become the Luftwaffe’s new front line fighter aircraft. That contest was eventually won by the Messerschmitt Bf 109.