Flawed F-35 Fighter Could Suck Up Another $8.3 Billion
Policy + Politics

Flawed F-35 Fighter Could Suck Up Another $8.3 Billion

REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

The Pentagon’s most expensive weapons system, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, is facing more delays. Again.

As of last month the aircraft was more than $160 billion over budget and seven years behind schedule. Now that delay is likely to be seven-and-a-half years.

Related: DOD Is Stuck with a Flawed $1.5 Trillion Fighter Jet

Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, the officer in charge of the fighter program, told the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces panel yesterday that software developments issues may set the program back another four to six months.

Development and production of the 2,400 jets is expected to cost $391.2 billion. The Pentagon this month asked Congress for $8.3 billion in fiscal 2015 for further testing and procurement of 34 aircraft.

“Affordability remains my number one priority,” said Bogdan, who took over as head of the F-35 program in 2012. “We must use all of our energy finishing development within the time and money we have, we must continue to drive the cost of producing F-35s down, and we must start today to attack the long-term life cycle costs of the F-35 weapon system.”

Congress will need to approve the disbursement of any additional funds.

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