Against the advice of the US Air Force, Lockheed continues to push to place the LMXT / A330 tanker facing the Boeing KC-46

At the beginning of last March, the US Air Force announced its decision to bring back the KCy program, which aims to replace part of the oldest KC-135 and KC-10 Extender tanker aircraft still in service, to only 75 devices, against 160 devices initially planned.

This program, which was to give rise to competition between Boeing's KC-46 Pegasus, already chosen by the USAF in 2011 as part of the KCx program, and Lockheed-Martin's LMXT tanker based on the A330 MRTT from Airbus, was then reduced in volume so as to free up credits and resources for the KCz program, to follow, which should allow it the design of a new generation tanker aircraft capable of operating in a contested environment.

Be that as it may, at the same time as the reduction in volume of the KCy program, the US Air Force had also announced that it intended not to launch competition around this program, and to turn directly to the Boeing KC-46 , so as to maintain a homogeneous fleet that is easier to maintain.

This decision is, obviously, far from satisfying Lockheed-Martin, which apparently has not said its last word on this subject, to bring the Pentagon to choose its champion rather than that of Boeing.

Boeing KC 135 Stratotanker e1686145958484 Tanker Aircraft | Armed Forces Budgets and Defense Efforts | Military aircraft construction
The US Air Force aligns today more than 380 KC-135 Stratotanker including 240 within the reserve forces entered in service between 1957 and 1965

Indeed, to the great surprise of many informed observers, through the voice of the director of the LMXT program, Larry Gallogly, Lockheed-Martin announced that it had selected General Electric's CF6 turbojet engine to power its LMXT, and thus US Air Force that the American aeronautical giant did not intend to be satisfied with a decision without competition from the Pentagon in this area, while according to LM, its aircraft offers better performance and reliability than that of its Boeing competitor .


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