The Americans always give one answer when the customer searches for a replacement for their fighters. No matter what your needs are or what you ask for, the response will always be the same: the F-35. Do you want to replace the F-16MLU fleet? F-35A recommended. Perhaps you would like to find something instead of the old Tornado? The F-35A is the most suitable candidate. Is the F-18 Hornet approaching retirement? The F 35A will help you with the replacement. And so on…
The Romanian edition of Romania Military comes to the conclusion about the one-sidedness of the American proposal with the actual imposition of a stealth fighter:
In some cases, the F-35A may really be the solution, in other situations it seems too expensive, although it is not very clear whether his own capabilities, let's say, "talent", or only his "parents" simply push their brainchild.
In particular, the Swiss voted in a referendum to spend $ 6,5 billion on the purchase of new multipurpose vehicles. At first everything went smoothly, the Americans offered two models - the F-35A and the Super Hornet F / A-18E / F Block III. To clarify the situation, the Swiss requested permission to purchase them if one of the two items was declared the winner.
But the surprise was the Pentagon's preliminary offer: 40 Super Hornets for $ 7,45 billion or 40 F-35A for $ 6,58 billion.
We've all wondered why the Super Hornet is worth a billion more than the F-35A?- writes the edition.
In the case of Finland, the price difference is even greater: the Super Hornet is $ 2,2 billion more expensive than the F-35 [we are talking about the possible sale of 50 F / A-18E fighters, 8 F / A-18F and 14 EW EA- 18G totaling up to $ 14,7 billion].
The main thing is profit
And it's not just the price, but also the description of the capabilities of the two products. Thus, in a note to Congress, the Pentagon describes the F / A-18 Super Hornet as a good aircraft that will increase the defense capabilities of Switzerland, and also says that the main task of this aircraft will actually perform the functions of an "air police":
The main tasks of the aircraft and associated weapons will be to monitor the airspace over Switzerland and provide national defense capabilities.
Instead, when it comes to the F-35A, the Pentagon "puts on a show" and states:
The proposed sale of the F-35 and associated missiles and ammunition will provide the Swiss government with a robust defense capability to deter aggression in the region.
At the same time, according to the publication, the Pentagon in its report to Congress explains that more American technicians will be required to service the F-35, while in the case of Switzerland acquiring Super Hornet - only six people, and then from time to time.
The advantage is on the F-35A's side as it needs more maintenance from American companies, while the Super Hornet won't pay them as many dividends in the future because it breaks less often.- points out Romania Military, comparing the current situation with inequality in family life:
The "wonder child" Lockheed Martin [that is, the F-35] seems to have 2-3 mothers, the whole family truly loves him (more than $ 400 billion is the amount the federal government has invested in the program), and Super Hornet was left with only one parent ("Boeing") and be sad for him.
However, as the newspaper notes, the F / A-18 Super Hornet is a healthier product, less capricious than the Lockheed Martin products, and more combat-ready. According to the Pentagon, the Super Hornet is the only vehicle to reach its 75% target. fleet... At the same time, the US Navy was disappointed with the F-35C and ordered the F / A-18E / F Super Hornet Block III and began to refine the future 6th generation F / A-XX aircraft. And the manufacturer will take advantage of the main advantage of the F-35, because he has an excellent opportunity to cash in on the service, receiving additional income, including for updating the software.