The new baseline forecasts the average cost of the F-35 fighter, including research and development (R&D) and inflation, will be $135 million per plane, plus an additional $26 million for the F135 engine built by Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp.
In 2012 dollars, the average cost of each single-seat, single-engine plane, including R&D, would be $112.5 million, plus $22 million for the engine.
This is the first year that the government has separated out the cost of the plane and the engine, and comparison figures were not immediately available.
Bloomberg reports this:
Which when you look up the latest USAF budget figures (PDF) for "fly-away" costs, there is a disagreement.
(click to make image larger)
All of this assumes DOD will order the original number of F-35s dreamed about years ago. Economies of scale--imagined or otherwise. If the Bloomberg article is accurate, full rate production will never happen.
And, there are all those lost orders which have killed the original business plan.
A review of some of the F-35 challenges can be viewed here.
“It’s about $37 million for the CTOL aircraft, which is the air force variant.”
- Colonel Dwyer Dennis, U.S. JSF Program Office brief to Australian journalists, 2002-