Boeing contracted to build Super Hornet fighters for Kuwait

27 June 2018
Kuwait will receive 22 single-seat F/A-18Es and six twin-seat F/A-18Fs by the end of January 2021. Source: US Navy

Boeing has received a USD1.5 billion contract for the production and delivery of 28 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet combat aircraft for Kuwait.

Announced on 27 June, the fixed-price-incentive-firm contract provides for the production and delivery of 22 single-seat F/A-18Es and six twin-seat F/A-18Fs by the end of January 2021.

This award comes some three months after Boeing was awarded USD1.2 billion for long-lead non-recurring engineering required to develop a baseline configuration, and to deliver radar warning receivers and weapons. That earlier contract is expected to be completed in September 2022.

In November 2016 the US State Department approved the sale of up to 40 Super Hornets (32 F/A-18Es and eight F/A-18Fs) for Kuwait, valued at USD10.1 billion (including related equipment and support). These would initially augment the Kuwaiti Air Force’s current 39 Boeing F/A-18C/D Hornets and the 28 yet-to-be delivered Eurofighter Typhoons, before eventually replacing the legacy Hornets.

As revealed in a simulator contract announced earlier in June, the Kuwaiti Super Hornets will be built to the US Navy’s (USN’s) latest Block 3 standard. Taking elements of Boeing’s previously touted International Roadmap and Advanced Super Hornet, the Block 3 will include upgrades to the Raytheon AN/APG-79 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar; an Elbit Systems large area display (LAD) ‘glass’ cockpit and next-generation avionics; an infrared search and track (IRST); ‘shoulder-mounted’ conformal fuel tanks (CFTs); Integrated Defensive Electronic Counter Measures (IDECM); and new General Electric F-414-400 enhanced engines.

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