J C Menon
Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has unveiled an image of the fuselage of the first Korean Fighter eXperimental (KF-X) multirole fighter, prior to rolling out the first prototype in April 2021.
“After the first prototype, the remaining five prototypes will come out one after another within the same year,” an official at KAI informs. The final assembly of each of the top, middle and bottom parts of the fuselage of the prototype will be conducted in the second half of this year.
“We plan to commence the test flight in 2022,” he adds.
KF-X is undergoing assembly in the company’s Sacheon factory with the prototypes expected to undergo four years of trials with the development expected to be complete by mid-2026. The first batch of mass-produced KF-X aircraft are expected between 2026 and 2028. They will be equipped with limited air-to-ground weapons in addition to air-to-air weapons though the second batch, which will be series-produced from 2029, will be capable of performing full air-to-air and air-to-ground combat missions.