Gareth Jennings, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly
12 June 2017
BAE Systems has completed Eurofighter Typhoon deliveries to Saudi Arabia, with the 72nd and final aircraft being flown to the Kingdom on 6 June.
Images of single-seat aircraft 8023 and 8024 (UK serials ZK622 and ZK623 respectively) departing BAE Systems' Warton production facility were posted on Twitter on the same day. BAE Systems declined to comment to Jane's, citing commercial confidentiality.
Saudi Arabia ordered 72 Tranche 2 Typhoon aircraft in 2007. At an estimated GBP20 billion (USD41 billion at the time), it was one of the largest defence procurement contracts ever signed.
Under the original plan, the first 24 aircraft were to be built by BAE Systems in the UK, with the remainder to be assembled in-country at the Alsalam Aircraft Company (a joint venture between Boeing, Saudi Arabian Airways, and Saudi Advanced Industries Company). However, this plan was scuppered by issues surrounding the safeguarding of proprietary information at the part-Boeing-owned plant, and the abandonment of a planned new facility at Taif. In 2013 it was instead decided that all 72 aircraft would be built in the UK, with Saudi Arabia focusing its attentions on delivering in-country through-life support to the fleet.
Deliveries began in 2009, with aircraft being handed over to the Kingdom in three batches. Batch 1 covered the initial 24 aircraft, including 12 twin-seaters; Batch 2 was for 24 more aircraft, including six twin-seaters; with Batch 3 made up of the final 24 aircraft, including another six twin-seaters.
Boeing received $46 million contract modification to perform interim contractor support for the new Saudi Arabia’s F-15SA
Eurofighter Typhoon: Details
AN-132 Light Multipurpose Transport Aircraft: Details
F-15SA (Saudi Advanced): Details