UAC delivers last of 50 Su-35S fighters to Russia

The United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) revealed on November 25 that it has handed over the final three of 50 new-build Sukhoi Su-35S multi-role fighters to the Russian Ministry of Defence (MOD).

The aircraft were accepted by specialists from the 485 military representation of the Russian MOD and have since been relocated from the UAC’s Komsomolsk-on-Amur (KnAAZ) facility to permanent bases across the Russian Aerospace Forces. This latest delivery completes a five-year contract, under which a batch of 50 new-build Su-35S (NATO reporting name: Flanker-E) fighters were handed over to frontline squadrons throughout the air arm.

Su-35S [UAC]
One of the three Sukhoi Su-35S multi-role fighters that were handed over to the Russian Ministry of Defence on November 25, 2020. UAC

Yuri Slyusar, the general director of the UAC and the Sukhoi Company, said: “We have completed the implementation of another long-term contract for 50 Su-35S aircraft in the interests of the [MOD]. KnAAZ is one of the most modern industrial sites in the UAC circuit, in the development of which serious investments have been made and production facilities have been modernised. This allows us to fulfil our obligations to customers in full and on time.”

From this latest batch of three Flanker-Es to be delivered, two will be used for training aviation personnel and for military trials at the Russian MOD’s training centre in Lipetsk. The third example will remain in Komsomolsk-on-Amur, where it will join the 23rd Tallinn Fighter Regiment at Dzemgi airfield.

At the ARMY 2020 International Military and Technical Forum – which was held in late August at Kubinka air base, near Moscow – the Russian MOD and the UAC signed a number of long-term contracts. This included the supply of the latest aviation technologies, along with the supply of more Su-35S 4++ generation multi-role fighters, to Russia.

The Russian MOD adds that “the Su-35S aircraft has the maximum range of capabilities when operating in the air-to-ground and water surface ranges. This aviation complex is distinguished by its high manoeuvrability, a wide range of weapons, and crew support.”

AirForces Intelligence data states that, as of December 1, 2020, the Russian Aerospace Forces operates 98 examples of the Su-35S. The Flanker-Es have been supplied to the service in two batches, the first comprised 48 aircraft and the second order of 50 fighters has just concluded. The platform entered operational service with the air arm in January 2013.