With all this talk of P-51s, p-47s etc...
I got a chance to tour The Wright Patterson AFB museum with the illustrious Robert Shaw
I knew Robert thanks to the fact that we both played the late-90s massively multiplayer WW-II air combat simulator, Air Warrior and had gathered in nearby Indianapolis for a convention of folks who played the game (I also got to meet "Turtle", but that's a story for another time)
So naturally the group was sharing all sorts of opinions about the various aircraft that were on display but Bob remained silent until one plane came into view.
He said (and I paraphrase) "Gentlemen, you're not going to like this... But this was the finest fighter aircraft in all of WW-2"
Bob quite literally wrote The Book on Air to Air combat, so I'm inclined to agree with him.