MOSCOW – All Su-57 fighters will be equipped with superior weaponry in their characteristics to foreign counterparts, head of the Russian Armed Forces’ Major Armed Forces, Anatoly Gulyaev, told the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper.
Gulyaev recalled in an interview with the newspaper that in May Vladimir Putin set the goal of completely retooling three regiments of the Russian Aerospace Force with Su-57 fighters by 2028.
“It is noteworthy that since the appearance of the Su-57 fighter, many foreign experts have already appreciated the unique capabilities of the Russian aircraft, which surpasses the Western analogues that have been promoted,” the military official said.
The fifth-generation Russian fighter Su-57 made its first flight in 2010. The combination of high maneuverability with the ability to perform supersonic flights as well as a modern complex of on-board equipment and low visibility gives it superiority over competitors.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has decided to order nearly five times as many fifth-generation Su-57 stealth fighters as originally planned to replace older fighters, strengthen Russian airpower, and give Russia a competitive edge over its rivals.
“The 2028 arms program stipulated the purchase of 16 such jets,” Putin said during last week’s defense meeting before announcing that the Russian military had “agreed to purchase 76 such fighters without the increase in prices in the same period of time.”
The Russian president said a 20% reduction in cost had made the purchase of additional fifth-gen fighters possible. Improvements in the production process are also reportedly behind Putin’s decision to order more of the aircraft.
He added that a contract would be signed in the near future for the fighters, which he said would be armed with “modern weapons of destruction,” according to Russia’s state-run TASS News Agency. Such weapons could include the R-37M long-range hypersonic air-to-ar missile, an advanced standoff weapon with a range of more than 300 kilometers, or about 186 miles, Russian media reported.