Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) has announced it has delivered the 134th F-35 aircraft for the year, exceeding the joint government and industry 2019 delivery goal of 131 aircraft, the company said.
One hundred and thirty-four deliveries represent a 47% increase from 2018 and nearly a 200 percent production increase from 2016. Next year, Lockheed Martin plans to deliver 141 F-35s and is prepared to increase production volume year-over-year to hit peak production in 2023.
The 134th aircraft is a Short Takeoff and Vertical Landing (STOVL) model for the United States Marine Corps. In 2019, deliveries included 81 F-35s for the United States, 30 for international partner nations and 23 for Foreign Military Sales customers.
Using lessons learned, process efficiencies, production automation, facility and tooling upgrades, supply chain initiatives and more — the F-35 enterprise continues to significantly improve efficiency and reduce costs. The price of an F-35A is now USD 77.9 million, meeting the USD 80 million goal a year earlier than planned.
The F-35´s mission readiness and sustainment costs continue to improve with the global fleet averaging greater than 65% mission capable rates, and operational squadrons consistently performing near 75%. Lockheed Martin´s sustainment cost per aircraft per year has also decreased four consecutive years, and more than 35% since 2015.
With more than 490 aircraft operating from 21 bases around the globe, the F-35 plays a critical role in today´s global security environment. Today, 975 pilots and 8,585 maintainers are trained, and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 240,000 cumulative flight hours. Eight nations have F-35s operating from a base on their home soil, eight services have declared Initial Operating Capability and four services have employed F-35s in combat operations.
In addition to strengthening global security and partnerships, the F-35 provides economic stability to the US and international partners by creating jobs, commerce and security, and contributing to the global trade balance. Thousands of men and women in the US band around the world build the F-35. With more than 1,400 suppliers in 47 states and Puerto Rico, the F-35 Program supports more than 220,000 jobs.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 105,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.