Textron Aviation Defense has announced the delivery of the first Beechcraft T-6C Texan II Integrated Training System to the Tunisian Air Force in support of operations at No. 13 Squadron at Sfax Air Base in Tunisia.
In 2019, the Government of Tunisia requested a possible sale of twelve (12) T-6C Texan trainer aircraft from the United States to will replace Tunisia’s aging trainer fleet and allow Tunisia to continue training pilots to support Tunisia’s counter-terrorism and border security missions. Tunisia will have no difficulty absorbing this aircraft into its armed forces.
Last year, the Pentagon revealed that the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center awarded contract valued at USD12.5 million to Textron Aviation Defense to provide long-lead items to support the aircraft, in a contract valued at USD12.5 million. Subsequently, on June 30 the U.S. Department of Defense announced the contract for Tunisian Air Force T-6C training aircraft for a total of $106 million.
The Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract comprises eight T-6C Texan II advanced military training aircraft, in-country field service and logistics support representatives, program management support, interim contractor support for the first year, training for pilots and maintenance professionals, spare engines, spare parts and aircraft support equipment.
The Beechcraft T-6C Texan II is designed and manufactured by Textron Aviation Defense LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. company. “Textron Aviation Defense is honoured the Tunisian Air Force has chosen the world’s best and most affordable military trainer — the legendry Beechcraft T-6C Texan II — as its next primary trainer,” said Fouad Kasri, Director of Sales & Strategy for Africa and the Middle East, Textron Aviation Defense.
“Tunisia is the thirteenth nation to acquire the T-6 and has now taken delivery of the 1,001st T-6 manufactured by our team in Wichita. We are delighted to welcome yet another North African and Mediterranean allied nation to the distinguished group of global air forces who rely on the next-generation T-6 Integrated Training System to achieve their pilot training objectives.” Textron Aviation Defense collaborated with the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) and the U.S. Air Force Security Assistance Training Squadron (AFSAT) to support the Tunisian Air Force’s modernization and growth program.
“Becoming a regional leader in military flight training excellence is one of the milestones on the path to achieving our counter-terrorism and border security mission requirements,” said General Mohamed Hajjem, the Tunisian Air Force Chief of Staff.
“We are grateful to Textron Aviation Defense, AFLCMC and AFSAT for supporting our acquisition of the Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, as well as our efforts to achieve territorial sovereignty and regional stability. This acquisition paves the way for additional bilateral engagements and strengthens our relationship with the United States.”
Textron Aviation Defense expects to deliver the second Tunisian Air Force T-6C in late 2022. The remaining six aircraft are slated for delivery in 2023. Training of the initial cadre of pilots began Oct. 31 at Textron Aviation Defense facilities in Wichita, Kansas. Additionally, the Tunisian Air Force will rely upon TRU Simulation + Training Inc., an affiliate of Textron Aviation Inc, for a suite of training devices and related support. The devices — slated for installation at Sfax air base — include a ground-based training system, an operational flight trainer and a computer-based training lab.
Beechcraft T-6 Texan II
The Beechcraft T-6 Texan II is the world’s premier military flight trainer. To date, the global fleet of 1,001 Beechcraft T-6 Texan II aircraft has surpassed 5M flight hours across 13 nations and two NATO flight schools. With an installed base that more than quadruples its closest competitor, the family of Beechcraft T-6 Texan II aircraft has been the world’s number one Integrated Training System (ITS) for more than 20 years.
A vital asset, the T-6 empowers global pilot training across the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Flight Training program in Canada, the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training Program (ENJJPT) at Sheppard AFB, Texas and the U.S. Air Force Aviation Leadership Program as well as the U.S. Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, Army and Coast Guard, the Hellenic Air Force, the Argentine Air Force, the Israeli Air Force, the Royal Air Force, the Iraqi Air Force, the Royal Canadian Air Force, Mexican Navy, the Mexican Air Force, the Royal Moroccan Air Force, the Colombian Air Force, the Royal New Zealand Air Force, the Royal Thai Air Force and now the Tunisian Air Force.
Proven experience, and affordability Backed by more than 90 years of experience delivering more than 250,000 aircraft worldwide, the Beechcraft T-6 Texan II’s low acquisition, operating and sustainment costs enable global air forces to fast-track pilot production. With an installed base that more than quadruples its closest competitor, the family of Beechcraft T-6 Texan II aircraft has been the world’s number one Integrated Training System (ITS) for more than 20 years. The Beechcraft T-6 Texan II capitalizes on an active production line with an industry-leading Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) rating of 10 as well as a proven supply chain and the affordability of 85 per cent parts commonality with the Beechcraft AT-6E Wolverine.