MRCA: Saab Upped the Ante

Gripen and 340 combo?

SHAH ALAM: SWEDISH company, Saab has upped the ante in its quest to sell its Gripen to Malaysia. It is now offering a couple of its MPA aircraft, the 340 MSA, for free if Malaysia selected the Gripen NG for the MRCA programme.

Saab had offered the Gripen NG together with its AEW aircraft as part of a combo deal. The offer for the free MPA was made- according to industry sources – to Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein at the recent DSEI 2015 in London, UK, recently.

I managed to check out the 340 MSA when it was displayed at the Singapore Airshow in 2014. Check out the video below.

The offer for the free planes could be seen as an act of desperation to some but it make sense as Malaysia has a requirement for 4 MPA as it had been reported previously. However as the MRCA programme remained officially on hold the offer for free MPAs could be deal changer or breaker, based on your outlook of course.

Saab 340 MSA
Saab 340 MSA. Saab picture

As the MSA is based on the 340, it is likely that the same airframe will be offered for the AEW (though I could be wrong) variant. It must be noted that only Saab is offering the combo deal (not a requirement of the MRCA programme) from the other competitors namely, the Boeing Super Hornet, the Eurofighter Typhoon and the Dassault Rafale.

Gripen NG test bed with Meteor, IRIS -T and GBU load-out. Saab.
Gripen NG test bed with Meteor, IRIS -T and GBU load-out. Saab picture.

Of the three only Boeing could offer something similar to Saab, though the cost of the Boeing AEW and MPA variants made it very unlikely. Boeing has the cheaper MSA variant, which came during LIMA 2015, though I have not heard anything of a combo offer let alone a freebie!.

As I had mentioned before the Gripen NG remained the outsider for the MRCA programme as the RMAF seemed to prefer a twin engine solution. However, Saab believed their offer remain attractive as they claimed it is the most economically viable for Malaysia even if the AEW and MPA are excluded.

Saab AEW variants, the 2000 and 340. Saab picture
Saab AEW variants, the 2000 and 340. Saab picture

With both the AEW and MPA already part of the RMAF and the Armed Forces requirements, perhaps Saab may have the winning package. As for the leasing offer of C/D versions of the Gripen to bridge the gap between the retirement of the Fulcrums and the introduction of the NG (in 2019 at the earliest), is still valid, I am told.

Saab Gripen NG prototype.
Saab Gripen NG test bed. Saab picture

Saab has teamed up with Deftech to meet the requirements of the MRCA programme together with the AEW aircraft. However they have not teamed up for the MPA requirement. For that programme, Deftech is working with another airframer.

If the MPA requirement become a programme of record, Saab will offer the Swordfish MPA. Unlike the 340 MSA, the Swordfish is a full-blown MPA complete with sono -bouy launcher and armed with torpedoes and missiles.

— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 2222 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Buying Gripen NG with Saab 2000 AEW and Saab 2000 MPA seems like a package that is very economical and efficient for our rmaf. Having the same manufacturer and the fact that these planes have lower operating cost compared to others is well suited for us.

  2. Thailand has bought both the Gripen and the T-50/FA-50. Would be nice to know how both of them compare within the same airforce.

    When you compare gripens to the others, of course the operating costs are low as it is a small fighter, only a little bigger than the F-5E. Its low operating costs comes also with lower performance compared to other fighters.

  3. If we get an AEW, a common data link and make improvements in other areas; I don’t think the Gripen’s ‘lower performance” will be an issue for us. The statement a few years go by the former Chief of Switzerland’s airforce : ” The Gripen is not the perfect choice but it suits our requirements” can also be applied to us.

  4. Well looking at its technical capability, this jet is quite formidable and may outperformed its larger adversary if in the hand of a skilled pilot. I’d say why not just grab the offer, it may never come twice. After all the jets are unlikely to see real action apart from simulated dog fight exercises, unless we have to take side if all hell breaks loose between China and USA in the SCS, which is unlikely. They will aged like the rest of our jets before we even realized it 20 years have passed and RMAF is looking for a new replacement again.

  5. “May outperform its larger adversary if in the hand of a skilled pilot” and operating in conjunction with other assets including an AEW : as part of a networked environment, rather than a platform specific one. In short the effectiveness of whatever platform we get will be determined not so much by the actual platform but by the systems we acquire/develop to work with it.

    Just as important as the actual platform is the AEW and the common data link: the importance of this – in this day and age – can’t be overstated. If we’re going to get an MRCA without an AEW (I don’t see how we can afford either at present), the plain fact is that we won’t be able to get the best of what the MRCA can offer : the RTAF and off course the RSAF will attest to this.

  6. Don’t think we can afford any mega defence project under present economic climate.Will have to wait until the price of crude oil goes back to over USD100 per barrel.In the meantime we have to find ways and means to keep the MIG 29s flying.It is interesting to learn the Syrians are still using the old MIG 21s against ISIS.We need to learn from the Syrians how they have been successful in maintaining the old Soviet fighter jet.

  7. The Syrians are still using Fishbeds because they couldn’t afford anything
    else …. Their economy was/is in a mess; over the years there have been numerous reports of the Syrian buying new aircraft but all these never materialised as after the Cold War the Russians insisted on hard cash. It also helps that parts are still relatively easy to obtain from Russia and other countries. No doubt we have a lot to learn from many countries but the Syrian experience in keeping their Fishbeds flying is not one of them. Using the same analogy we have a lot to learn from the PN as it still operates ships that were laid down in WW2 and has a “new” flagship that was laid down in the late 1960’s (I’m not insulting the PN BTW as I think its support crews do a great job by maintaining ships that are literally museum pieces).

    Apart from Syria, there are other countries still using Fishbeds (Croatia and Romania included) or who have recently retired theirs. There are also other countries, who for want of anything better (either due to finances or embargoes) who still fly aircraft older than the Fishbeds (e.g. North Korean MiG-15s).

  8. Very alluring offer from saab. As financial and current economic scenario is concern I think this is the best deal so far.

  9. In fact i eould say buy whatever we can afford. It may not be the best but then we have some very good fighter in the su30mkm. So if we can get say 36 Grippen NG with AEW n MPA why not?. When we are rich we xan get the more sophisticated n ultra expensive planes. The only alternative we have is to get F16 the latest iterations or F15. These ate xheaper as its been a long time under production. Forget the super hornet. Its an end of production machine already. Whereas there are still buyers for both the f16 n f15. The t50 n f50 are not cheap either . Its about the price of the f16.
    Buy cheaper planes but buy more . It will complement the Su

  10. It rightly feels like desperation. With Brazil hinting heavily of further cuts and losing out of the Indonesian F-5 replacement project, the sales pipeline is looking very thin for Saab.

  11. learn to maintain fighers from who?

    there is a difference between:

    1) we can’t maintain/ have no idea how to maintain the Migs

    2) we don’t want to continue maintaining the Migs and just let the Migs reach their scheduled maintenance intervals and retire it so we don’t have to spend money on its maintenance (and upgrades). Its done because we want new fighters regardess we have the money or not.

    If the will is there, even the F-5E could still be used, modernised with new radars and avionics as is what thailand is doing (even after getting new gripens and f-16 upgrades).

  12. the oil never will be over usd100 per barrel again.period. we can afford it.long term installment payments.

  13. if the SH is the better choice, might as well continue with it, no need to think twice over something that the end users might not be happy with later on. We can still work with the swedes on the AEW and MPA through another collaboration.

  14. Gripen is the best plane for MRCA and this is the best deal on offer. Take it, even if we have the money for the others, Rafale, Typhoon and, erm…SH.

    This little plane has a small logistics tail and can easily land on Lima. It’s flown combat missions over Libya. The single engine doesn’t seem to be having reliability problems. Bonus is, Sweden is a neutral country (so far) and we’re spreading out the supplying countries a bit.

  15. … “If the will is there, even the F-5E could still be used”

    How about 3) the MiG is expensive to maintain and offers lower availability. It is not about “will”, it is about money and deciding how many more years we want to operate a single role platform that was cheap to buy and expensive to operate, that should not have been chosen in the first place.

    “modernised with new radars and avionics as is what thailand is doing”

    Now this is not just about “will” but about serious money. Money that involves committing further to the above asset or choosing a new, more economical asset. Furthermore we will have to pay the development costs and bear the development risk for the upgrade. There are at least three F-5 upgrade paths out there, by Brazil, Thailand and Singapore, and all involve Israel equipment so are out for us.

  16. Currently the Gripen e/f price is around 75 to 80 million per aircraft. The c/d is about 55 to 60 million.

    Compare that to the TA-50 (25 million Indonesia) or FA-50 (35 million Philippines)

    Both are light fighters, smaller than other mrca and uses the same engine family (f404/414 similar to the hornet, sh)

    For the same budget, you could get twice as many golden eagles over the gripens. To me the golden eagle is adequate as a supplement for the MKM and for air sovereignty missions like QRA (mach 1.5 speed), air defence, close air support. Also most of the gripens hype (advanced aesa radar, meteor missiles, datalinks) are add on items that could be retrofitted to any other aircraft, so that is not an advantage that is applicable only to the Gripen.

    My ideal scenario:

    Get 40 ta/fa-50 for 1.25bil for 2 mig squadrons. Arrive 2018

    Get 36 used f/a-18c/d hornets from Kuwait for 2 hawk squadrons. Arrive 2019

    In principle t-50 for hawk, hornets for mig capability. Total cost about 2bil (getting 76 fighters, instead of only 18 brand new mrcas)

  17. A question, why is RMAF prefer twin-engine rather than one? What’s the advantages of having twin-engine?

  18. Hafiz,

    Two engines are considered safer, that’s why US navy aircraft are all twin engine. A twin engine plane can still fly on one engine.

  19. FREE: a couple of MPA in form of Saab 340 MSA IF buy Gripen.

    340 is an out-of-production airframe. Not totally “neutral”, have ties with the US with its GE-produced engines. Can’t find its type of maritime surveillance system suite and also so far nobody operates 340 MS. Furthermore what is free we dunno until we have seen the ink on paper, if it ever comes to that stage.

    Commonality if 340 comes in, is non-existence with similar type of a/craft currently operates in MY. For me, new MPA c/w “bare minimum suite” that have a better chance to be bought will be based on either CN-235 or Beechraft.

    It’s likely that the new MPA will likely be bigger than the Beechcraft

  20. Again, too much emphasis is being placed on the actual platform; when what we really should be discussing is how we employ whatever MRCA we get, the assets we have to work with the MRCA and how we integrate them all. The Gripen, by itself, just like the the Rafale or Typhoon, offers no major advantages or tertiary capabilities if operated autonomously; the difference will be when we get an AEW platform and a common data link and slowly develop the tertiary capabilities these things enable us to have.

    Despite what ever shortcomings the Gripen has (to be expected given that it’s a cheaper, single engine aircraft) compared to the user sexy Typhoon and Rafale; it’s a decent aircraft and there is no reason why it doesn’t meet our operational requirements (assuming off course the RMAF get over the 2 engine thing, which to be fair has its points).

    For me, the actual platform is of secondary importance; of far greater importance is the systems capability we acquire. If we don’t go that; it doesn’t matter what MRCA we get as we won’t be able to get the best out of the capabilities it offers. Full stop.

  21. Kinda out of the box idea from me. What if we buy the mig-35? We have pilots n crews that are familiar with migs. What do you guys think? Objectively

  22. nimitz,

    True, Saab 340 is out of production. No details are given in the article but I’m sure the offer would involve newer aircraft and systems. Saab’s smart because I think apart from MRCA, Saab is also angling on landing the separate MPA package; its strategy is to let us size up the MSA package (and support) before we make up our minds on MPA/AEW. If we like it, then they could end up with the MPA contract as well. So, 340 is both a sweetener and a hook.

    Whatever it is, with or without the 340, I think we should get Gripen. It’s been said RMAF want 2-engined jets but, as this point has been argued elsewhere, I’ll let it rest.

    Also true Sweden is not entirely neutral, that’s why I put the caveat.

    of course we can put both the AEW and MSA equipment on new built aircraft but that would entail more cost. Both the Saab 2000 and 340 are out of production and the current offer provide for such aircraft unless we ask for new build airframes.

  23. Agree with En Azlan

    We are looking for a multi role fighter
    We need our assets networked surely
    It is something we can afford such that most are up flying

    So much common sense to go for the gripens

  24. Gripen is cheap, common sense to get Gripen bla bla bla…

    To be honest I was once also so amazed with the Gripen, and that made me want to know all about it.

    The problem with Gripen facts. It is not attainable at the same time.

    Max range. It is with external drop tanks.

    Max payload. Can only be achieved with internal fuel tanks half empty.

    Supercruise. Achievable at high altitude with light load in the coldest sweedish winter. Supercruise in tropical malaysia? Forget it.

    In short, it is just a super hyped light fighter, not much different than the kai fa-50 golden eagles. If you want to spend 80million on each mrca(if you have the cash la), get a super hornet. If you want low cost, get the golden eagles, not gold plated gripens.

  25. Nihd,

    Pointless to talk about Russian aircraft as the RMAF does not want to go in that direction. The problem is not so much with the actual aircraft but with other issues. Also, until issues with MH17 have been resolved; there will be no big ticket purchases from Russia; even if the RMAF and the government both agreed to go Russian; which they don’t. All this has been discussed here before.

    On paper, the most practical MPA solution would be the CN-235 or the CN-295, if there is a need for a need for a larger platform. Converting some of our Charlies into MPAs would make sense but for our operational needs; is a C-130 MPA, with its size, range and endurance, an overkill?

  26. Is the Hercules plane available for the AMASCOS system

    I guessing that it had never been done on the Hercules before but it’s possible.

  27. After decided to acquire SU-35, Indonesia May also Order F-16s, Lockheed Martin Says

    A good and strategic decision from our jiran …

    Not really, I think

  28. Hafiz,
    Yes, the JSF is a single engine and the USN will be operating it. However, there was an article just 2 days ago in CNN- one of the USN top brass is not happy that the these smaller, lighter and shorter range aircraft will be used in the future.

    Apparently it increases the risk to aircraft carriers as they will have to operate closer to shore where there is a higher chance of being hit by a carrier killer.

  29. Langkasuka,

    Indonesia is still “haunted” by the embargo placed on it due to East Timor. Because of this there is still a perceived need to not place it’s eggs in one basket (read – not to be too reliant on the U.S.) and a strong lobby that pushes for the buying of Russian or non-Western stuff. Even the purchase of the Leopards had its critics with some saying T-90s should be bought.

    Sounds good in theory but in practice the U.S. is still the dominant power in the region and like the rest; Indonesia still relies on the U.S. as a counter weight to a rlsing and more assertive (some would say agressive) China.

  30. “Still hoping for f35.these jet is the future not gripen.he3”

    Ah yes, because we have a lot of money. We can wait ages for the aircraft to be delivered and afford them to be grounded for fixes. We will be conducting strikes against enemies with sophisticated air defense systems. We will never get into close range air-air fights or need more than four air-air missiles per aircraft. We are friends with Israel who makes the wings.

    The only area I can agree with you is we will never be cut off from support because we will never become that unfriendly with the US. Despite what all of you out there think.

  31. So we just buying aircraft for the sake of buying then.

    No, its for national interest of course …

  32. Every plane has its cons 1 .eurocanard to bloody expensive mate 2.gripen to small 3.rusian (seriously) 4.super hornet. we gonna be the sole operater after 2030.usn says they still gonna operate it beyond 2030.i dont believe it plus this is not f5(operated by many country).

  33. AM,

    Indeed. People keep harping about an embargo. If every we were placed under a U.S. arms embargo the first thing we would worry about is possible effects on the economy……


    Depends on who you ask. Dr. Kua will tell you that we don’t need defence spending as the Confrontation ended years ago. Other enlightened souls will say we should abolish the MAF as Malaysia has no enemies and will never go to war. Dr. Kua will also say that buying jets is silly as UAVs can perform all the roles that jets do …. There are some who actually believe him.

    I wish we were buying jets for the sake of buying them but in reality we have a perfectly legitimate role for them : in peacetime, in times of tension and in times of conflict.

  34. Every time something new introduced people will go crazy criticize it.when telephone first introduced some people says that we not gonna meet each other anymore becoz we just gonna talk via telephone.all of this really anoyyed me.the new era is coming mate.nothing good gonna come trying to deny it.

  35. To the contrary, if anything the F-35 will be procured in much lower numbers than planned, not higher. Super Hornets will be in service for longer than planned, not shorter.

  36. You’re absolutely right : every aircraft has its “pros and cons”, thus it will be a compromise based on actual capabilities, finance, politics and operational requirements.

    The F-35 is great but is unaffordable for us. Also even if we can afford it; we can’t get the same level of operational effectiveness from it as the U.S. or even other, smaller, NATO air cons as we don’t have the level of connectivity or the full spectrum of ISR assets. I’d rather have legacy, non stealth Super Hornets integrated to Eriye rather than cutting edge, stealth and futuristic F-35 operating autonomously.

  37. First you must remember the bad news sell better than the good news.i pretty confident the uncle sam gonna sort those problems out .secondly the super hornet will be in service for longer than planned.doing what the f18 hornet doing now maybe but to be the front liner i really doubt it plus theirs also gonna be supported by eg growler meanwhile us?.

  38. There are no rule or report as far as i know that saying the jsf cannot be integrated withvthe ereiye .or there is?

    I believe Azlan was saying that if we buy the F35 we may not be able to buy AEW aircraft at the same time as its more expensive than the SH

  39. As things stand; there is no cash for any MRCA. Eventually there will be cash but unlikely enough for both MRCAs and AEW. The RMAF will then keep pushing the need for an AEW and the government will say the same thing : “when we have the cash”; which could mean in 3 years or 20.

    The F-35 is great but in the unlikely event that we do get it anytime soon (as likely as the Tonga Air Force deploying to Kuantan for joint training); the actual aircraft won’t make a key difference as we don’t have the systems to go with it : all the buyers of the F-35 (namely the U.S, Britain and Israel) either have the systems capabilities in place or will operate as part of a coalition (countries such as Norway, Italy and Canada – all of which are networked to a large extent but may not have a range of ISR assets). From the very start both the F-22 and F-35 were designed to operate as part of a networked environment comprising various assets that are all networked – this is what makes both aircraft so promising in capabilities; not only the actual platform but also the systems that it operates with.

    Modern air combat is mainly about who has better SA and who fires first; in a one to one “platform level” engagement against an older generation opponent, the F-35 and F-22 – despite being stealthy and having superior radar and other sensors – may not have much of an advantage; at least not to the extent that it becomes decisive.

  40. “First you must remember the bad news sell better than the good news.i pretty confident the uncle sam gonna sort those problems out .”

    It is not a question of ability, everyone knows the US is able to design and deliver a kickass fighter. It is just that questionable objectives went into the design of the F-35, and questionable program management went into its delivery as a functioning fighter.

    Eventually some of these problems will be solved, as upgrades are released piecemeal, but at what cost in downtime and money? Other air arms will be able to bear this better than us, as they are richer and are not depending on the F-35 to fill an urgent airframe shortage.

    Some costs will fall 100% on us- we’ll have to engineer a “F-35MKM” because we will be the only customer who does not recognise Israel. We have to ask whether we really need all the advantages, stealth and so on, in return for all these costs.

    Some problems can be solved, such as finetuning the ejection seat so that lighter pilots aren’t killed on ejection. Others cannot be solved, such as an airframe optimised for lower speeds and shorter ranges than many 4th generation fighters. Everything points to a sick program. But I won’t lecture you, since you obviously know the severity of each problem well enough to pronounce your confidence so confidently.

    It’s interesting to note that every F-35 customer is upgrading its current fighters (major upgrades such as AESA radars) because they will be needed to bridge the gaps in number, availability and time that the F-35 cannot fill (barring dream size increases in the defence bugdet, which still won’t get the F-35 ready any sooner).

  41. There are so many options out there but what maf needs is a decision maker that will stand its ground..not thinking of the pros n cons of this a/c n that a/c…that will be the top brass who will lead to victory in any battle fought.if money is little to spread around…think….1.we will not be in any major war with our neighbours..2.uncle sam is just around the corner to assist if there is a shake down in SCS…3.we are currently preventing sampan pple from kidnapping tourist for ransom…so me think the affordable way is to buy plenty of super tuscano to take care of the sabah n sarawak states sea border..its cheaper than SH…gripen..can be configured into many roles…this is of cause interim measures rather than we have to few super sonic fighters to be distributed all over malaysia….my non academic mind

  42. Hi guys,

    Full time lurker here. Off topic, how’d yo guys think of jf-17 block 2. Its operational proven(block 1). Cheaper, though shorter range, no aesa until maybe block 3.

    Btw, what is actually our mrca requirements?

    2 engines? ( that will surely exclude Gripen from the race)
    Medium fighters?Heavy fighters?
    We ve got heavy fighters already ( MKM’s) that can dog fight.
    Whats our mig’s and f5 roles aniway? interceptor/dogfight?

    Apart from the AESA radar no other actual MRCA requirements has been officially acknowledged.

  43. Irrespective of the fact that were not going to war and that ESSCOM has become a priority; we still need to have a minimal deterrent capability and how does one have a minimal deterrent capability if the RMAF is so overstretched and has problems meeting it’s peacetime commitments on account of having too few airframes? There is absolutely no question that the RMAF has a pressing and legitimate need for additional fighters to add to the small number it has: a number that will get smaller when the Fulcrums go.

    As for Uncle Sam, we can’t assume it will get involved in the event of troubles; especially given that the “troubles” may not necessarily affect freedom of navigation in the South China Sea and America’s position as a dominant power. There are also economic and geo-political factors that will determine Uncle Sam’s involvement.

    Even if we bought 50 Tucanos, determined non-state actors will still be able to enter Sabah if they want. The key is the peace treaty – BBL -which aims to create economic and social stability in Mindanao and in us having good intel – unfortunately the BBL is delayed – thanks to Mamasapano. It also doesn’t help that there are Tausugs in Sabah who assist their cross border brethren by providing Intel. In short, we need more than just assets to ensure the f****rs don’t enter.

  44. Developtment cost.we can always share/sell it to other muslim country or to other airarms that see our wing suit them more than the original wing.they wont be much airframe left to choose in a few years time so it not that risky anymore to invest in it.after pouring almost 500 b and doing countless trial into jsf im pretty sure that the engineer at lockheed have others solution to this wing thing.its like inventing a car.along the way you have many design that work the same ways or maybe have pros and cons but still working than the one that got introduced but got left out because other factor.its all about compromise.

  45. “Developtment cost.we can always share/sell it to other muslim country or to other airarms that see our wing suit them more than the original wing.”

    If only getting into the stealth fighter business was that easy. I see only stubbornness and bold and expensive statements in a subject you know nothing about. You can try asking for the design data to make that wing or integrate your own non Israeli electronics. You’ll never get it. Then you can start blaming the Zionists for blocking you.

    To be charitable to you, you’re not the first to have suggested this. Someone has suggested banding with Arab countries to make a whole fighter in the name of self sufficiency.

    “im pretty sure the engineer at lockheed have others solution to this wing thing”

    In case you did not understand what you read, the wing works. Almost everything else does not work properly.

  46. Khairul,

    In RMAF service the Fulcrum is a full time air to air platform.

    The MKM can “dogfight” but it is based on a long range interceptor. Also, in this day and age most engagements will be at BVR : we saw this in Iraq, Kosovo, Bosnia and Ethopia/Eritrea.

    The F-5Es, in recent times, were mainly utilised as escorts for the
    RF-5Es and for pilots to maintain currency. In the past it was also used as an “aggressor”; fitted with a centreline droptank.

    You raised a good point. As I’ve mentioned in the past; an argument can be made that the RMAF need a lightweight, single engine, single seater as it already has 2 types of twin seat, twin engine platforms in service. It will be a blow for Saab, if, when the time actually comes when we have the cash, when the RFI specifies a requirement for an MRCA above the Gripen’s weight category.

  47. Ujang: “There are no rule or report as far as i know that saying the jsf cannot be integrated withvthe ereiye .or there is?”

    F-22 and F-35 communicate on special datalinks to preserve stealth otherwise they will give away their position and there is little point buying them over a non-stealth aircraft.

    Current generation aircraft must be integrated with and carry a pod to use these datalinks. The upgrade has been developed for USAF F-15s, USN Super Hornets and the various fighters and AEW aircraft of F-35 customers. Since no F-35 customer operates the Erieye, again you will be on your own for the development cost and risk.

    Speaking of which, your primary fighter today, the Su-30MKM will need these US datalinks integrated to work with the F-35. Good luck with that.

  48. I do agree we need minimal deterence n presence in the SCS.but dont you think its abit funny to have those mininal deterence if money is available but our sea n land boaders are in amess…what we need right now are tools to tighten all those boarders…cheap but effective tools…plus the human factor.all our neighbours will be laughing behind us if we put our priority wrongly..meaning halaman belakang rmh sendiri kucar kacir …nak bazir duit dengan peralatan yg canggih dan tak seberapa bnyk…tu duit bole beli patrol boat 60-80 meter aplenty to safe guard the sea boaders n at the same time show our presence…tu nama nya serampang dua mata..ini kta bazir duit pacak platform tak bergerak…sure u guys are thinking beyond the box… sekupang

  49. Hi Marhalim,

    So officially AESA radar is the base requirements.
    I can guess range is one too given Malaysia geography.
    And of course, the after service/strategic long run because they reject Russian aircraft due to this.( low availability cuz after-service sucks due to “civil comrades war?” or something I never knew).
    On this, they should be wary on Thyphoon as well because EU is kind of brittle though not as mess up as Russian.

    Hi Azlan,

    Mig is air superiority medium weight ship.
    f-5 is a way to make our pilots have flight hours.
    Tigereye is a recon ship.Both are light ships.

    These probably can also be the base pre-requisite (or at least should be) for our MRCA.
    And of course the numbers too.

    Our MKM,Hornets and hawks can perform surgical strikes, the first two can penetrate deep to enemy teritory if needed. So Id say we can neglect this requirement.

    So Id say, we are looking for aesa radar ship(bvr) that we can buy alot dirt cheap,that have cheap operational hour so our pilots can spend the piloting hours, with a decent range that can travel in between east and west Malaysia(roughly 1200kmm,how far Butterworth and Labuan anyway?).

  50. Talking about MRCA is a bit boring. It’s been ages already. Let’s talk about it when money is provided.

  51. So funny la the one suggesting F35. For one thing it\’s too bloody expensive. It also doesn\’t fulfill our needs, and we don\’t need it\’s first strike capabilities . There\’s also the issue with Israel sourced parts. It\’s also some time away from being available, and we need airframes yesterday. As it currently stands the Gripen NG looks to be the best deal IMO,even without the free MPA.

  52. “It will be a blow for Saab, if, when the time actually comes when we have the cash, when the RFI specifies a requirement for an MRCA above the Gripen’s weight category.”

    Wot? RMAF are not looking for a ‘heavy’ or ‘light’ MRCA. I don’t think our fighter GSR/RFI are based on weight of the plane — we’re not buying planes for an aircraft carrier — but rather on speed, range, payload, systems, crew, etc. For MRCA, the ‘role’ will be moot if the candidate is truly multi-roled.

    Of course, take-off weight is a determiner, but a single-engined plane will obviously be ‘light’ compred to twin-engined ones because for starters, it lacks one engine and subsequently doesn’t have to carry as much fuel as its twin-engined brethren for its operating speed and range.

  53. RFIs include the weight of the desired fighter. Even though they are not always marketed as such fighters are classed into various categories based on weight and size.

  54. Everybody talk about great offer, but nobody saw the price and many many other terms and conditions. So how can you all say what offer is better?

    Because we will never see the fine print of course we have to comment on the little information we have. If you don’t want to please don’t complaint about otherwise.

  55. If MY decides for the Ereiye but choose other platform such as the same Bombadier of Falcon Vip jets does that incur additional costs ?

    Yes unless the aircraft have been fitted with the same system.

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