I wanted to write huge article about Eurofighter and all its predcesors development on my web, but I do not have enough time. So shortly
Altrought the heads of the Panavia partners first called for development of three-nation air-superiority fighter in 1979, the design has its origins
in escort-fighter studies begun by MBB (now DaimlerChrysler Aerospace) in 1974. The resulting TKF90 concept had much in common with today´s Typhoon
– a high agile, single seat, twin engined, delta/canard fighter. But there were to be many twists and turns before Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK
were able to agree the operational requierement and sign the development contract for what was to become Eurofighter.
a different TKF proposal – Dornier rautenflugel
another Northrop/Dornier ND-102
Aeritalia pre-Eurofighter study
The first tri-national joint project team was formed in september 1979 by Aeritalia (now Alenia), British Aerospace and MBB. The result was the
European Combat Aircraft concept, delta/canard drawing on the TKF90 design. In 1980, an attempt was made to bring Dassault into the project, resulting
in the European Combat Aircraft concept, again a delta/canard. The barriers to participation proed insurmountable for the French, however, and in 1982
the three Tornado partners formed the joint venture Agile Combat Aircraft (ACA) programme.
BAe P.106 ECA proposal
another BAe P.110 ECA proposal
When Germany pulled out in 1983, forcing MBB to withdraw from the project, BAe and Aeritalia continued on their own, building the Experimental
Aircraft Programme (EAP) technology demonstrator. After MBB withdrew, the rear fuselage from Tornado had to be used, producing the single-fin EAP. The
demonstrator flew in 1986 and proved very worthwhile for development of the Eurofighter.
Meanwhile, in 1983, the air forces of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK had agreed an outline European staff target for future fighter.
Industrial studies were completed in 1985, with four of the nations supporting one configuration, the forerunner to the European Fighter Aircraft
(EFA). In august 1985, Germany, Italy and the UK signed the Turin Agreement, committing the three nations to project definition phase for an
air-superiority fighter with 10 ton empty weight, 50m2 wing area and two 90 kN engines. Spain joined a few weeks later. France elected not to join and
instead pursued development of the ACX, which became the Dassault Rafale.