Dassault Aviation's Rafale has won the Indian Air Force's $10.4 billion contract for 126 medium multirole combat aircraft (MMRCA), beating European consortium EADS Cassidian's Eurofighter Typhoon.
Rafale emerged the lowest bidder for the tender for 126 jets worth up to $15 billion, including life support, technology transfer, offset, training etc.
Under the offset clause of Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) of 2006, the winner of the tender is required to reinvest 50 per cent of the deal amount in the Indian defence industry.
Even at $15 billion, IAF has found Rafale aircraft $4-5 million cheaper than its European rival Eurofighter Thyphoon, sources said. Also, the IAF seems to have a preference for the French aircraft.
The Indian Air Force also has a fleet of French Mirage 2000 fighters, currently undergoing upgradtion. This also might have influenced the decision.
Both Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon are very advanced aircraft and have seen quite some action. They have also been the preferred aircraft for air forces around the world.