Dept. of Defense strikes record $34 billion deal for new F-35s
A new lot of F-35s have been ordered for the Air Force and it’s thanks to a record $34 billion deal between Lockheed Martin and the Department of Defense.
The multi-year contract covers multiple production lots, with the first set giving the Air Force 157 new jets. The layout of the deal will lower the cost of a conventional F-35A to around $80 million, a savings of $9.2 million per aircraft.
“This is a historic milestone for the F-35 enterprise, and marks the largest procurement in the history of the department,” Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition Ellen Lord said in a statement.
According to Air Force Magazine, the program’s cost savings are incredibly noteworthy.
“I am proud to state that this agreement has achieved an estimated 8.8% savings from Lot 11 to Lot 12 F-35As,” Lord said, noting an average cut slashing of 15 percent “across all variants from Lot 11 to Lot 14.”
In all, more the deal will give the Air Force more than 450 new F-35s to add to its fleet.
While the details are mostly a secret, it is known that new blocks will feature some performance and electronic upgrades, as well as a new weapon, known as the Small Diameter Bomb II.
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