F-35 Fighter Costs Increasing by Billions, Pentagon Report Says

F-35 Fighter Costs Increasing by Billions, Pentagon Report Says

A Pentagon report that includes the estimated costs of producing Lockheed Martin’s F-35 jet reveals the program is more costly than originally projected, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.

The Pentagon’s latest annual cost assessment for major projects now estimates the total price for research and procurement at $22 billion, with upgrades for the jets driving up the costs.

The projected costs for the new F-35 fleet over six decades has grown by $73 billion to $1.196 trillion.

The F-35’s acquisition cost increase of about 5.5% from $406.2 billion to $428.4 billion isn’t related to program performance, delays or excessive costs for labor or materials, according to the report sent to Congress last week.

Controversy around the F-35 program recently surfaced when the Air Force requested purchasing eight fourth-generation F-15X jets in their fiscal 2020 budget, as ADC recently reported.

“The F-35 program remains within all cost, schedule and performance thresholds and continues to make steady progress,” the Pentagon emailed in a statement to Bloomberg. The office “is committed to the delivery of cost-effective warfighting capability across all areas of the program.”

 

Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Chris Thornbury

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