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Pictures: Japan unveils new military aircraft pair

First flights of Japan’s indigenously-developed C-X transport and P-X maritime patrol aircraft appear to be drawing closer, with images of the first completed prototypes having been released by the defence ministry’s Technical Research and Development Institute.

Led by Kawasaki Heavy Industries, the approximately $2.8 billion C-X/P-X project is intended to deliver replacements for Tokyo’s current air force fleet of Kawasaki C-1 airlifters and initially part of the navy's current inventory of Kawasaki/Lockheed Martin P-3 MPA.

Japan's TRDI has meanwhile conducted test flights of a C-1 testbed modified to carry an Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries XF7 engine which will be used to power both the twin-engine C-X and four-engine P-X, which KHI also hopes to respectively use as the basis for a commercial freighter and regional airliner.

Tokyo had planned to roll out its first prototype aircraft earlier this year, but delayed the ceremony following the discovery of a production fault with all eight development aircraft.


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