Textron AirLand, LLC, a joint venture between Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) and AirLand Enterprises, LLC, today unveiled its Scorpion prototype, a versatile Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR)/Strike aircraft platform. The aircraft was introduced during a press conference at the Air Force Association Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition in National Harbor, Maryland.
Scorpion ISR/Strike twin-jet tactical aircraft developed by Textron AirLand. (Photo: Business Wire)The demonstration aircraft is now in test phase, with first flight scheduled to occur before the end of this year—a rapid schedule by any measure of military jet development. Textron Chairman and CEO Scott Donnelly said, “We began development of the Scorpion in January 2012 with the objective to design, build and fly the world’s most affordable tactical jet aircraft capable of performing lower-threat battlefield and homeland security missions.” Donnelly continued, “We relied on commercial best practices to develop a tactical jet platform with flexibility and capabilities found only in far more costly aircraft.” The Scorpion is designed to accommodate the increasingly stringent budget constraints of the U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. partner nations. The Scorpion’s design is well matched to the Air National Guard’s missions such as irregular warfare, border patrol, maritime surveillance, emergency relief, counter-narcotics and air defense operations. While Scorpion’s lower acquisition price is an advantage, an equally important benefit is the lower cost of operation over the aircraft’s full lifecycle. Combining ease of maintenance and globally-available commercial components, the Scorpion can significantly lower the customer’s total cost of ownership. F. Whitten Peters, former U.S. Secretary of the Air Force, an investor in and advisor to AirLand Enterprises, LLC, commented, “With its industry-leading capabilities in commercial aircraft and defense systems design and manufacturing, Textron was a natural partner to bring the vision of an affordable tactical military jet to fruition.” He added, “In an impressively short time, the joint venture has designed and built a capable and mission-ready aircraft with no up-front government funding. We believe Scorpion will fill a critical price and performance gap in the tactical military aircraft market.”
For a closer look at the Scorpion and its mission capabilities, please visit www.ScorpionJet.com.Downloadable images of the aircraft are available in the Scorpion Media Gallery. About Textron Textron is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft Company, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Greenlee and Textron Systems. More information is available at www.textron.com. About Textron AirLand, LLC Textron AirLand, LLC is a joint venture between Textron Inc. and AirLand Enterprises, LLC with the purpose of designing and manufacturing an affordable, capable jet platform based on commercially available technologies and processes for the tactical military jet aviation market. More information about our initial aircraft is available at www.ScorpionJet.com. About AirLand Enterprises, LLC AirLand Enterprises, LLC was formed by a group of experienced aerospace and defense executives dedicated to bringing an effective, low-cost, ISR/Strike jet to domestic and international military markets, replacing aging aircraft and complimenting high-end multi-role fighters. Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements which may project revenues or describe strategies, goals, outlook or other non-historical matters; these statements speak only as of the date on which they are made, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. These statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the efficacy of research and development investments to develop new products or unanticipated expenses in connection with the launching of significant new products or programs; the timing of our new product launches or certifications of our new aircraft products; our ability to keep pace with our competitors in the introduction of new products and upgrades with features and technologies desired by our customers; changing priorities or reductions in the U.S. Government defense budget, including those related to military operations in foreign countries; changes in foreign military funding priorities or budget constraints and determinations, or changes in government regulations or policies on the export and import of military and commercial products; and volatility in the global economy or changes in worldwide political conditions that adversely impact demand for our products; performance issues with key suppliers or subcontractors.