The Swedish SAAB and Boeing have signed a joint development agreement to develop a new training air craft for the US Air Force. The pair do not have a contract yet to build it, but they will jointly propose their purpose-built air craft to the US Air Force, once it is developed.
The new air craft will be an advanced, cost-efficient solution for the upcoming competition to replace the U.S. Air Force’s aging T-38 aircrew training system. The JDA, with Boeing as the prime contractor and Saab AB as primary partner, covers areas including design, development, production, support, sales and marketing.
“Teaming with Saab will bring together our companies’ formidable technical expertise, global presence, and willingness to present an adaptable and affordable advanced pilot training solution,” said Boeing Military Aircraft President Chris Chadwick. “Boeing and Saab form the foundation for what will be the strongest, most cost-effective industry team. Our comprehensive Family of Systems approach provides a new, purpose-built T-X aircraft supported by innovative training and logistics support to offer total-life-cycle cost benefits to the US Air Force and taxpayers.”
“Saab is proud to join with Boeing for the T-X competition, thus creating a highly capable team to deliver unprecedented value to the customer. We are sure this is the best way to supply affordable first-class trainers to the U.S. Air Force,” said Saab President and CEO Håkan Buskhe. “We will invest in development of this completely new aircraft design over the coming years. This cooperation with Boeing is part of our strategic development and we confirm our long-term financial targets.”
Boeing and Saab look forward to the upcoming acquisition process, which will lead to the customer awarding the contract. The U.S. Air Force T-X program will include aircraft and training that will prepare warfighters for the next 40 years. The Air Force plans to replace the T-38 with a new Advanced Pilot Training Family of Systems and about 350 aircraft, plus associated ground-based training systems and logistics and sustainment support.
The trainer solution from Boeing and Saab and other potential team members will be a newly designed aircraft, built to meet the needs of the USAF.