Boeing has been awarded a three-year contract for the production of 78 F/A-18 Block III Super Hornets, as part of the U.S. Navy’s fleet modernization effort, with conversion of existing Block II Super Hornets to Block III set to begin early in the next decade.
As part of the Block III variant, upgrades include enhanced network capability, longer range, reduced radar signature, and advances to both the cockpit and communication systems. The fighter’s life also will be extended from 6,000 hours to 10,000 hours.
Navy officials estimate this multi-year model saves a minimum of US$395 million on this contract valued at approximately US$4 billion.
“A multiyear contract helps the F/A-18 team seek out suppliers with a guaranteed three years of production, instead of negotiating year to year,” said Dan Gillian, vice president of F/A-18 and EA-18G programs, Boeing. “It helps both sides with planning, and we applaud the U.S. Navy on taking the appropriate steps needed to help solve its readiness challenges.”