Russia offers to sell 5th Gen Sukhoi Su-57 fighter jets to India
30 July 2019
Russia has started mass production of 5th Generation stealth fighter jet Sukhoi Su-57, a combat aircraft that is on a par with on US F-22 Raptor and the F-35 Lightning II. Russia has also invited India to join the Su-57 combat jet programme that India had left half way through.
Russian Aerospace Force has already ordered 70 of the Sukhoi Su-57 fighters and the first aircraft will be delivered before the end of 2019, according to a brochure released by at the Sukhoi Aircraft Company, which is a part of Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation.
The Russian fighter is the only 5th Generation combat aircraft which is comparable to the F-22 Raptors and F-35 Lightning II jets of the United States.
"Multinational aviation system of the fifth generation, which has highly-intelligent onboard equipment, is barely noticeable and is also characterised by a great line of aerial targets interception and ground targets destruction. Mass production was launched in 2019 and a long-term contract was signed with the Defence Ministry for delivering over 70 aircraft," says the brochure published by Russia's Sputniknews.com.
Russian news agency TASS quoted the office of Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov as saying that Sukhoi Aircraft Company has started to implement the Su-57 contract. "A state contract was signed at the Army 2019 international arms exhibition between the Defense Ministry of Russia and the Sukhoi Company for the delivery of a batch of Su-57 fifth-generation fighter jets. The Sukhoi has started to fulfil its contractual obligations," Borisov's office reported according to TASS.
The Su-57, which first flew on 29 January 2010, has already been tested under combat conditions in Syria.
Russia is also offering the Su-57 to the Indian Air Force with Russia’s Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) Deputy Director Vladimir Drozhzhov saying that the two countries "should resume this project".
Earlier in March 2019, Russian minister of industry and trade Denis Manturov had told the Interfax news agency that the IAF would be interested in buying the Su-57. He had also pointed out that Russia and India share deep defence ties and the latter was the biggest buyer of arms manufactured by the former.
Also, India and Russia had partnered during the initial development of the Su-57, then known as Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation (PAK FA or T-50). IAF, however, had some reservations about the capabilities of Su-57 and pulled out of the programme but offered to rejoin the project if its concerns were addressed.
IAF Chief Air Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa had told Russia military newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda during his 9-12 July visit that India would take a call on the Su-57 only after its entered service with the Russian Air Force. Russia will officially unveil the export version of Su-57 during the November 2019 Dubai Air Show. The fighter will be called Su-57 E (export).
The F-22 and F-35 are already in service with the US Air Force and close allies of the US, including the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Japan, South Korea, Israel and Singapore also operate the F-35.