The Fw 187 was developed at the beginning of the year 1936 as a single seat fighter with a maximum speed of over 500 km/h. The first flight of the prototype called Fw 187 V1 took place in summer 1937; during the flight, the aircraft reached a top speed of 520 km/h, even if it was equipped with weaker Jumo-210D-engines (Daimler-Benz engines were planned to be used). In a competition of the RLM (Reichsluftfahrtministerium) the Fw 187 was unable to prevail itself against the Bf 109 B-2 (even if it was about 60 km/h faster), the reason for that was that two engines are a wastage for a single seat fighter.
The Military made some time later an announcement that a heavy Fighter (Bomber destroyer) was needed; this airplane should have two engines, a crew of three and should be armed with machine guns and bombs.
The third prototype was modified, but not exactly like it was wanted, actually the competitive aircraft by Messerschmitt and Henschel were also not designed like it was wanted. The last prototype Fw 187 V6 received the now available DB 600 A engines and reached a top speed of 627 km/h.
Even if it had outstanding performance and manoeuvrability, only three Fw 187 A-0 were ordered, because the competing Messerschmitt Bf 110 was chosen. The aircraft were finished in 1940 and were returned to Focke-Wulf after testing at Rechlin, later they were used for a “Private Air Force” for Focke-Wulf to defend the factory in Bremen.
In winter 1940/41 they were delivered to the Luftwaffe where they were based in Norway to replace the Bf 110, but at this time any such plan was long dead, even if the pilots said the Fw 187 was superior to the Bf 110, in general. The experience resulted from the Fw 187 was used in the Focke-Wulf Ta 154.