Saab has begun deliveries of the series production Gripen E with hand-over of the first six aircraft, comprising four to the Força Aérea Brasileira (FAB – Brazilian Air Force) and two to the Swedish Air Force. The hand-over took place on November 24 at Saab’s facility in Linköping, Sweden.
The Commander of the FAB, Lieutenant Brigadier of the Air Carlos de Almeida Baptista Junior, accepted the four Brazilian aircraft during the ceremony at Linköping. At the same time, the single-seat FAB variant was officially designated as the F-39E.
Brazil had first announced that the Gripen had been selected to meet its FX-2 fighter requirement on December 18, 2013. An agreement for the purchase of 28 JAS-39E and eight JAS-39F Gripen NG aircraft for the FAB was concluded on October 24, 2014. The initial 13 FAB aircraft are being produced by Saab, while the remainder will undergo final assembly in Brazil. Sweden is acquiring 60 single-seat JAS39E, for which an order was confirmed by Saab on December 18, 2013.
The first FAB aircraft will enter service with 1° Grupo de Defensa Aérea as part of Ala 2 at Base Aérea de Anápolis, replacing the F-5EM/FM Tiger IIs currently operated by the unit. The first Swedish Air Force unit to re-equip with Gripen E will be the F7 Wing at Såtenås.