Sunday, October 23, 2011

Eurofighter Typhoon reportedly out of Japan's F-X competition

Japan Security Watch, referencing a Nikkei news article (in Japanese only) is reporting that Japan's Ministry of Defence has eliminated the Eurofighter Typhoon from its shortlist of fighters in the running for the country's next generation F-X fighter aircraft competition. This leaves Boeing's F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and Lockheed-Martin's F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter to vie for Japan's fighter contract.

Observers have always felt the sole European bid was a dark horse in the competition, given Japan's traditional close military and political ties to the United States. That said, one does get the feeling based on statements issued by Japanese political and military officials, that the country already has its heart set on the F-35, and that the competition was a procedural necessity.

That might explain the absence of Boeing's F-15SE Silent Eagle in the Japanese competition, whose Air Self Defence Force already operates legacy variants of the type. With the boast of advanced low-observable features (albeit less capable than the F-35) but almost certainly costing significantly less than the JSF, the Silent Eagle would have at the very least provided some competition in a head-to-head fly-off against the Lockheed-Martin product.

We leave you with a Boeing marketing video for the Silent Eagle, shown at the recently held Seoul Airshow in South Korea, taking out some (North Korean?) bad guys:

No comments:

Post a Comment