Germany Eyes Additional F-35 Fighter Jet Acquisition

Germany is considering the purchase of eight more F-35 fighter jets from Lockheed Martin, adding to the 35 already ordered. The advanced, nearly untrackable aircraft will replace the aging Tornado jets, with delivery starting in 2026 for pilot training in the U.S., and operational deployment in Germany by 2027.

Reuters | Updated: 07-06-2024 11:46 IST | Created: 07-06-2024 11:46 IST
Germany Eyes Additional F-35 Fighter Jet Acquisition
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Germany is looking into buying eight additional F-35 fighter jets made by U.S. defence giant Lockheed Martin, a military source told Reuters on Friday, on top of the 35 jets it has ordered. Berlin is looking at the costs of such a purchase, the source said, with the stealthy aircraft seen as the most advanced fighter jet.

In 2022, Germany decided to order 35 F-35s including missiles and other weapons for around €10 billion ($10.89 billion). The jets are equipped with advanced sensors and other gear, and Lockheed says it is nearly impossible to track them with radar.

The aircraft will replace the aging Tornado, the only German jet capable of carrying U.S. nuclear bombs stored in Germany. The German air force has been flying the Tornado since the 1980s, and Berlin has plans to phase it out between 2025 and 2030.

The F-35 will be stationed at an air base near the western German town of Buechel from 2027 and could also carry U.S. nuclear weapons. The first eight F-35s are scheduled for delivery in 2026 and will be based in the U.S. for pilot training.

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