The first prototype of Serbia's delayed Utva Lasta-95/Lasta 3 piston trainer made its first two flights from Batajnica air base on 5 February, flown respectively by test pilot Lt Col Salko Hadžić and Maj Saša Gruba. Serbia intends to acquire 15 of the aircraft to replace Utva-75s used for pilot training by its 252nd Mixed Aviation Squadron.

Iraq also in December 2007 ordered 20 armed examples from Serbian arms export company Yugoimport-SDPR, and placed options on a further 15. A second prototype with two underwing hardpoints designed to carry bombs weighing up to 100kg (220lb), rocket pods and pod-housed 12.7mm machine guns is scheduled to join the flight-test campaign in the near future.

Utva Lasta 95 
 © Vladimir Jovanovic

Source: Flight International