MOSCOW, June 18. /TASS/. The first flight of the upgraded strategic bomber Tu-160M2 is planned for March 2018. This was announced by the commander of aerospace forces (VKS) Russia Colonel-General Viktor Bondarev.
“It is planned that played the first aircraft will fly in March next year. We hope that our long-range aviation in the future will be to obtain three to four aircraft per year”, – he told in interview to the newspaper “Red star”.
The Russian defense Minister, army General Sergei Shoigu had reported earlier that serial production of the modernized strategic bomber Tu-160M2 is planned to commence after 2021. The idea to resume production of a modernized version Shoigu expressed in April 2015. In may of that year, Russian President Vladimir Putin instructed to resume production of these aircraft. In October 2016, Deputy defense Minister Yuri Borisov said that it is planned to produce 50 of these machines.
Updating the fleet
Bondarev also said that the new state program of armaments to 2025 will allow Air and space forces (VKS) Russia to upgrade the fleet of aircraft and helicopters up to 80-90%.
“In accordance with the state program of armaments, aerospace forces have a sufficient number of aircraft and helicopters. Until 2025 will be modernised aircraft up to 80-90%”, – said Bondarev.
According to him, the faulty equipment will be increased to 95%. “This applies to army aviation, and air defense missile troops, and Radiotechnical troops and spacecraft,” – said the commander of the VKS.