Latest F-35 Deals Finalized

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Last Friday, the Pentagon finalized contracts for the next two rounds of F-35 purchases. LRIP 6 and LRIP 7 contains seventy one new aircraft. In addition to aircraft meant for the US, this round of LRIP purchases contains aircraft for Italy, Norway, and the United Kingdom.

Overall, LRIP 7 pricing reflects a six percent drop over LRIP 5 pricing. F-35A pricing, coming in at $98 million, marks a major development, as this is the beginning of price points below the $100 million dollar range. F-35B pricing also fell, to $104 million. F-35C pricing also decreased, to $116 million per aircraft. Pricing for LRIP aircraft is traditionally higher, due to low rate purchases. Despite that, prices across the three variants have fallen with each LRIP purchase. Looking at these trends, it seems likely the F-35, once in full rate production (FRP) will meet initial Lockheed price estimates. To critics, I ask where is this ‘death spiral’ you love to proclaim? Prices are decreasing instead of rising. Orders are increasing instead of shrinking. These two factors are the exact opposite of a ‘death spiral’.

International orders are up, while costs are going down. These developments show the flawed arguments being put forward by certain critics. Not only is the F-35 not in a ‘death spiral’, the program is thriving, and gaining momentum with each passing day. In short, you can write off those claims from the peanut gallery, like so many others they have made over time, to be not only false, but intellectually dishonest. If only critics would use a bit of math….its like critics aren’t even really trying anymore….

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~ by arcturus415 on September 30, 2013.

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