• Thursday, June 4, 2020

Costs More Than a Su-57? India’s Tejas Fighter Turns Out to be Very Expensive

Discussion in 'Indian Defence Forum' started by CrazyZ, Apr 8, 2020.

  1. CrazyZ

    CrazyZ SENIOR MEMBER

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    The Indian Air Force is set to finalise a deal to purchase 83 Tejas Mk1A lightweight single engine fighters, which will mark the second major order for the aircraft following a prior order for 40 jets. The Tejas began development in the early 1980s, and following massive delays and almost 40 years of work the aircraft was accorded final operational clearance (FOC) by India’s aviation certifying authority in February 2019. The fighter is from a comparable weight range to the Swedish Gripen and Pakistani JF-17 fighter, and is considerably lighter than higher end single engine designs such as the American F-16 Fighting Falcon and Chinese J-10 Firebird. While touted as an indigenous program, many of the Tejas’ core systems are purchased off the shelf from foreign suppliers including an American F404 engine - the same as that designed to power the F-20 Tigershark light fighter in the 1970s, an Israeli sensor suite and electronics, and Russian air to air missiles.

    [​IMG]
    Su-30MKI Heavyweight Fighter and Tejas Light Fighter

    Development of a lightweight and low cost indigenous fighter has been pursued by a range of countries from Sweden to Taiwan from a number of reasons - allowing them not only to tailor the jet to the needs of their armed forces, develop high end technologies domestically and pursues their own design philosophies, but also because manufacturing jets domestically is usually a great deal cheaper than importing them at market prices. Considering the highly ambitious plans India has to expand its fighter fleet, which will require the induction of over a dozen new squadrons in the near future, a low cost lightweight indigenous jet would provide an effective means of doing so while remaining within the limits of the country’s defence budget. The only issue with this is that India’s Tejas, largely due to its reliance on very costly foreign technologies, is very far from a low cost fighter - with the recent order costing the Defence Ministry $62.7 million per airframe.


    [​IMG]
    Tejas Single Engine Light Fighter


    Purchasing the F404 and Israeli sensors and electronics at export prices, which are the most costly parts of the jet, the Tejas cannot be manufactured as a cheap indigenous platform as Pakistan’s JF-17, Taiwan's Ching Kuo and Brave Eagle, China’s J-10 and JL-15 or America’s F-16 are. Using the American F-35A as an example of the discrepancy in the prices of domestically produced and exported fighters, the jet is being purchased by the Air Force for around $80 million each but is being marketed for export for around $200 million each. Similarly, while Russia’s Su-57 is currently the most costly non-Western fighter being marketed for export, with an estimated export price of around $110 million, it is being purchased by the Russian Air Force for just $35 million each. Compared to the prices Russia and the U.S. respectively are purchasing the Su-57 and F-35A, both state of the art fifth generation designs which are considerably heavier and more sophisticated than the Tejas, the Indian fighter appears to present the country with much less value for money than previously thought.

    https://militarywatchmagazine.com/a...-tejas-fighter-turns-out-to-be-very-expensive
     
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  2. Arulmozhi Varman

    Arulmozhi Varman FULL MEMBER

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    I think someone slept or really idiots wrote this article. The cost per Aircraft for mk1A has been reduced to 42m dollars and it's a fairly ok price to have when one have aesa radar, jammer and pods.
     
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  3. PradoTLC

    PradoTLC SENIOR MEMBER

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    yes good price....

    now IAF will smash PAF.
     
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  4. pothead

    pothead BANNED

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    Our money, our fighters.

    We will buy them for a billion dollars each...
     
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  5. crankthatskunk

    crankthatskunk SENIOR MEMBER

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    Very expensive Samosa.
    What happened to Indi-genius production!!


    Pothead, yeah sure. Just elaborate, how they are your fighters!!
    On reason for hike up price is the use of imported vital parts, avionics and engines. Kinda counter productive to your arguments and the claim of "Indi-Genius"!!
     
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  6. El Sidd

    El Sidd ELITE MEMBER

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    Money is not an issue.

    Flight is.
     
  7. Zapper

    Zapper FULL MEMBER

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    Tejas Mk-1A costs $42mn a pop. Except for the engine, all major sub-systems like radar, avionics, AA missiles are being replaced by indigenous ones proving a major chunk of that cost stays within the country
     
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  8. El Sidd

    El Sidd ELITE MEMBER

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    How many do you think you need?
     
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  9. Alternatiiv

    Alternatiiv SENIOR MEMBER

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    Soviet Republic of India when?
    Seriously though, that's not how it works.

    Why market it at an export price of $200 million per piece though, and also domestically produce it for $85 million a piece, as the article says?
     
  10. Zapper

    Zapper FULL MEMBER

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  11. Alternatiiv

    Alternatiiv SENIOR MEMBER

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  12. Zapper

    Zapper FULL MEMBER

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    Anyone can put up a crappy article without knowing the factual updates. Infact, every month an article pops out that IAF is interested in the F-16 or Gripen and most recently F-18 but they're all paid articles to promote their product or agenda which also include ridiculing indigenous projects or over-bloating the costs

    HAL cut down it's share of profits, outsourced most of the components which brought down the price to $42mn a pop. Even for the current Mk-1, HAL acts as the lead integrator while airframe components are built by the following companies

    [​IMG]

    Now that HAL established a local supply chain and also incorporating more indigenous sub-systems in Mk-1A, that should help reduce the costs further. Also, the LCA project helped us in developing all the necessary test labs and research facilities required for aerospace development which is why the MWF design has been concluded at such a quick pace with metal cutting scheduled later this year for the initial prototypes
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2020
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  13. Dark1

    Dark1 BANNED

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    Once you have enough for domestic use, one can always export.
     
  14. Beast

    Beast ELITE MEMBER

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    Stupidity has no limit. :enjoy:
     
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  15. Indos

    Indos PDF THINK TANK: ANALYST

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    MWF program will further delay AMCA program. So with this new development, can I cay that AMCA will be rolled out after 2030 ?

    If I am an Indian planner, I will scrap MWF program and focus on AMCA and jet engine development.
     
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