Lockheed Martin Corp. [NYSE:LMT] announced today an agreement to commence production of F-16 wings in India. This strategic initiative positions Tata Advanced Systems Limited’s (TASL) to become the provider of wings for all future customers and strengthens their role in the F-16 global supply chain. TASL is Lockheed Martin’s strategic industry partner in India.
Lockheed Martin F-16
Producing F-16 wings in India will strengthen Lockheed Martin’s strategic partnership with Tata and support ‘Make in India’. The planned F-16 wing production move to India is not contingent on the Government of India selecting the F-16 for the Indian Air Force.
“Building F-16 wings in India is a natural next step that builds on our successful partnerships with Tata on the C-130J [airlifter] and S-92 [helicopter],” said Vivek Lall, Vice President of Strategy and Business Development for Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. “This is a strategic business decision that reflects the value of our partnerships with India and the confidence we have in Tata to perform advanced defence manufacturing work and deliver world-class products.”
Lockheed Martin’s broader proposed F-16 partnership with India – to produce F-16s exclusively in India for the Indian Air Force and export customers – stands firm. Lockheed Martin recently submitted a comprehensive, fully compliant 600-plus page Request for Information (RFI) response to the Indian Air Force.
Lockheed Martin and TASL announced last year that the two companies intend to join hands to produce the F-16 Block 70 in India if the aircraft is selected by the Indian Air Force.
The F-16 Block 70 features advanced avionics, a proven Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, a modernized cockpit, advanced weapons, conformal fuel tanks, an automatic ground collision avoidance system, an advanced engine and an industry-leading extended structural service life of 12,000 hours.
To date, 4,604 F-16s have been procured by 28 customers around the world. Approximately 3,000 operational F-16s are flying today with 25 leading air forces, including the U.S. Air Force.
For additional information, please visit: lockheedmartin.com/f16.
About Lockheed Martin
Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.