Fort laudersdale, MI — The National Guard’s new-generation fighter jet program is poised to enter service next year, but the project could be years away.
According to documents obtained by the Free Press through an open records request, the Air Force is moving forward with plans to buy 10 fighter jets from the United States’ third-largest supplier of military aircraft parts.
The Air Force will buy $25 million worth of the advanced-production F-35 Joint Strike Fighter from General Dynamics Land Systems in 2019.
The jets will have the ability to operate up to 400 miles per hour and carry four bombs.
The service also plans to procure 10 advanced-generation bombs from General Electric and Boeing, as well as 10 advanced aircraft engines from Boeing and General Dynamics.
But a deal is far from certain.
The Air Force has not yet committed to paying for the planes, according to documents provided by General Dynamics, and it has no specific delivery dates or estimated cost for the jets.
The company is also not publicly disclosing the number of F-15s it plans to purchase.
A spokesman for the U.S. Air Force said the F-16 will be the aircraft the service will purchase and said the company will not disclose details of the aircraft because it is “an important milestone in our acquisition strategy.”
The spokesman also said the service is still evaluating the price of the new-build jets.
The F-22 Raptor will replace the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
The F-21 was canceled by Congress in 2016 and is being rebuilt.
The U.K. plans to sell more than 1,200 F-111 stealth fighters, and France is buying more than 2,500 of them.