Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Switzerland, the Federal council chooses the Gripen NG

Official press release from Dassault Aviation / Rafale International

The Rafale team took note of the choice of Swiss authorities for the acquisition of their future fighter aircraft. It regrets that the Federal Council, as officially expressed, has "knowingly decided not to position Switzerland at the highest European level as regards the performance of new combat aircrafts."

The capabilities of the Rafale would allow the Helvetic Confederation to acquire a lesser number of aircraft to meet operational requirements, at a cost equivalent or less, as shown by the evaluations of the Swiss Air Force.

The "helvetic" Gripen exists only on paper. Its technical development and production should increase significantly the financial efforts of the Swiss authorities for the implementation of this program.

Rafale International thanks the 250 Swiss companies that have joined its project of Industrial Partnership in the 26 cantons of the Helvetic Confederation.

Bern, 30 November 2011

Nathalie BAKHOS
Communication Export

So Switzerland has decided not to follow the recomendation of the Armasuisse experts and to go with the less expensive aircraft. So be it. 
It's worth noting that this is the first export of the Gripen-NG which is not in service anywhere yet. So Switzerland is also taking some risks regarding the development of the aircraft.
Eventually, many people in the Swiss Air Force might wonder what was the point of the technical evaluation...

Also read Bill Sweetman report


  1. Though i too am sad that Rafale didn't win this round, the Swiss' decision is understandable:

    Gripen is about the same size as the F5E and uses an engine similar to the F404 that powers the F18C. Besides, Switzerland is a neutral country; Rafale and Typhoon's extra anti-air/ground attributes matter less to the Swiss than to, say, India or UAE.

  2. I think Dassault or EADS should be happy that they 'lost'!!! If they had won this order, you could have been sure that there would have been opposition of serious proposition from the usual assortment of activists, politicians and lobbyists that more expensive aircraft were selected.

    I think this explains the logic in the Indian Air Force's decision to shortlist only the EF and Rafale. That's the only way one of them can win. In a competition.

  3. Dommage!
    But at least they chose a European jet.

  4. Rafale should never have been considered due to its poor rate of climb. In a small country such as ours, we do not have the luxury of space to achieve altitude. Eurofighter was the best choice in this sense, but Gripen represents the best compromise between price and performance.