04 December 2011

Gripen Scores Another Win

The Swiss Military has decided to purchase the Gripen for its air force:
Switzerland has chosen to replace its fighter jet fleet with Swedish defence and aerospace group Saab's JAS-39 Gripen, Swiss newspaper Tagesanzeiger reported on Wednesday, citing unnamed sources close to the government.

Neutral Switzerland has wrangled for the past three years over whether to replace its ageing Northrop F-5E/F Tiger fighters, purchased in 1976 and 1981, with up to 33 new aircraft.

Saab shares were up 8.5 percent to 117.10 Swedish crowns by 1345 GMT after the newspaper report.

The newspaper said the cost of purchasing 22 jets would be about 3 billion Swiss francs ($3.3 billion), 1 billion less than the same number of rival models would cost.
I would also add that the Gripen is about ½ the weight and ½ direct operating costs.

When juxtaposed with the exemplary short and austere field performance, and the generally short distances involved, it's the best choice for the Swiss.

Well, it's the best choice except for not getting anything. After all, who's going to attack them, the French, the Italians, the Germans? I don't think so.

Stephen Trimble confirms this. Both SAAB and the Swiss government have confirmed the deal.


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