posted on Dec, 3 2011 @ 12:33 PM
In terms of international programmes, the UK has both won and lost in the power struggles.
On the Jaguar the RAF really wanted a trainer that would replace the Gnat and was on a par with the US T-38. French influence brought the attack role
to prominence and the UK instead launched the P.1182, which became the Hawk to meet our training needs. Ironically, France then needed a trainer and
partnered Germany on the Alpha Jet while he RAF was able to replace its ancient Hawker Hunters in the attack role and release the F-4 Phantom to the
air defence role, so it worked out for the best.
Further irony can be found in the fact that although the Jaguar was basically a Breguet design fitted with BAC wings, France quickly tired of it and
it has become regarded as a British aircraft, not least since every export order was won by BAC/BAe often in direct competition with some Mirage
variant or other.
BAe almost launched a next generation Jaguar in 1978 fitted with a "combat" wing featuring LERX and tip mounted missiles and powered by the Tornado's
On the Tornado, if any partner can be said to have been forced to take a plane it didn't want, it was Italy. The Italian requirement was for a single
seater agile fighter as a replacement for the F-104S (they really ought to have bought the F-16 when everyone else in Europe did). The German
requirement was or a single seater attack aircraft to replace the F-104G and the British requirement was for a two seat swing wing low level strike
aircraft, and look what got built!
The original design for the Tornado was the BAC UKVG of 1967, which was itself evolved from the cancelled AFVG. It was developed as the Panavia 200
and a single seater called the Panavia 100 was supposed to be built for Germany and Italy. Which of course never happened.
With Typhoon, the design as built is almost indistinguishable from the BAe P.120 of 1984, which BAe threatened to ' go it alone' on when they became
frustrated at the delays encountered in reaching an international agreement. The BAe EAP demonstrator that flew in 1986 that was part P.120 and part
Tornado was intended to show that they meant business. I believe that the EAP is the only new all British Mach 2 aircraft to fly since 1964!
I did a thread on the whole story a few years ago, it must still be around somewhere.
edit on 3-12-2011 by waynos because: (no reason given)