New Russia’s Strategic Bomber Tupolev Tu-160M2 May Perform Debut Flight in 2018

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Russia’s modernized strategic bomber Tupolev Tu-160M2 will perform its debut flight already at the end of 2018.

New Russia’s Strategic Bomber Tupolev Tu-160M2 May Perform Debut Flight in 2018

Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bomber (Photo: Sputnik / Vladimir Pesnya)

According to the Russian Aerospace Force Commander-in-Chief, Colonel-General Viktor Bondarev, Russia’s modernized strategic bomber Tupolev Tu-160M2 may perform its debut flight already at the end of 2018.

“The first Tu-160M2 is set to take to the skies in late 2018 and then the first serial-produced aircraft will perform its flight in 2021. After that, purchases will start,” Bondarev said on August 4.

In 2015, Moscow had taken a decision to resume the production of Tu-160 bombers in their upgraded Tu-160M2 modification. The development of the new-generation bomber PAK DA (standing for prospective aviation complex for long-range aviation) had been postponed to a later term.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the serial production of Tupolev Tu-160M2 bombers should start in 2023. The Russian Aerospace Force is going to buy no less than 50 such aircraft. In March 2016, Viktor Bondarev said that the Tu-160M2 might take to the skies for the first time in 2019.

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