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LM exceeds F-35 delivery goal for 2019

07 January 2020
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An F-35C on USS George Washington (CVN-73) during development testing earlier in 2019. Lockheed Martin beat its delivery goal of 131 aircraft in 2019, handing over 134 jets to US and international customers. Source: Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin delivered 134 F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters (JSFs) in 2019, exceeding the joint government and industry goal for the year by three aircraft.

In 2019 deliveries came from low-rate initial production (LRIP) lot 11, and included 81 F-35s for the United States, 30 for international partner nations and 23 for Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customers. Variants comprised 102 conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) F-35As, 25 short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) F-35Bs, and seven carrier variant (CV) F-35Cs.

The 134-figure for 2019 builds on the 91 aircraft delivered in 2018 – an increase of 47%. In 2017 the number was 66. As noted by Lockheed Martin, the goal for 2020 stands at 141 F-35s. Increasing numbers of aircraft are set to roll off the lines at Fort Worth in Texas, Cameri in Italy, and Nagoya in Japan through to peak-production in 2023.

In October the US Department of Defense (DoD) agreed a USD34 billion deal with Lockheed Martin for the production and delivery of 478 F-35s. The agreement included the 291 United States, 127 international partner, and 60 FMS aircraft in Lots 12, 13, and 14. These orders comprise 351 F-35As, 86 F-35Bs, and 41 F-35Cs.

As noted by the Joint Program Office (JPO) and Lockheed Martin, this block buy brings the cost of the F-35A down from in excess of USD250 million in Lot 1 to USD77.9 million in Lot 14. According to Lockheed Martin, the cost of the F-35A in Lot 12 will be USD82.4 million; Lot 13 will be USD79.2 million; and Lot 14 will be USD77.9 million. The cost of the F-35B in Lot 12 will be USD108 million; Lot 13 will be USD104.8 million; and Lot 14 will be USD101.3 million.

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