Sukhoi Forecasted 600 Su-57 Sale During Design Phase of the Aircraft

A Russian Su-57 fighter jet is on fire due to instrument overheating. Source VKS.

Russian Air Force will be equipping its services with 12 Su-57  fighters for the Training Center to continue evaluating and optimizing the design and initially develop tactics for use.

According to the Russian Arms Market Analysis Center ( TSAMTO), the Sukhoi Design Bureau estimated that it may be able to sell up to 600 Su-57 fighter aircraft for domestic consumption and export customers. Sukhoi so far produced 11 prototype aircraft and four production variant still to be delivered to Russian Air Force by 2020.

The Su-57 is a fourth-generation multirole fighter designed by the Sukhoi Design Bureau, which can destroy land, air and sea targets. Su-57 made its first flight on January 29, 2010. The contract for the supply of 76 Su-57 fighters to the Russian Aerospace Forces was signed at the Army-2019 forum.

Not only equipping its Air Force but the Su-57  fighter is also being offered by Russia for sale and exported to foreign countries to offset the development cost of the aircraft since the India withdraw from the program.

Su-57 Sales forecast in 2010. Source Russian Arms Market Analysis Center ( TSAMTO).

The Sukhoi Design Bureau forecasted in 2010, the following sales during the design phase of the Su-57 aircraft. However, none of the foreign buyers is interested in the Su-57 except Algeria.

Envisioned future operatorsNumber of aircraft
envisioned to be sold
year of delivery
Current status
Russia24-362025-203076 on order. Four to be delivered this year.
Uzbekistan 12-242025-2035Declined
Algeria12-242025-203012 on order
China (PLAAF)36-482035-2045Negotiated in 2018 & 2020. Declined
China (PLAN)Unknown 2035-2045Negotiated in 2020. Declined
India1002025-2035Negotiated in 2010, 2016 & 2018. Declined
TurkeyUnknown2025-2035Negotiated in 2018. Declined
UAEUnknown2025-2035Negotiated in 2016. Declined

So far Algeria placed firm order of 12 Su-57 and Sukhoi will deliver Aligerian Su-57 by 2030 if the Sukhoi meets testing criteria set by Algeria. Vietnamese Air Force will order about 24 Russian Su-57s.

General Director of Rosoboronexport Group, Alexander Mikheyev, said five Southeast Asian countries are interested in this fighter. However, Indonesia, Malaysia, India and China already declined Russian offer to buy Su-57.

After testing in the Syrian battlefield, the defects of the Su-57 are yet to refine during the mass production stage. The Russian Ministry of Defense has signed an official contract to order 76 Su-57 fighter.

A Su-57s engine malfunction during factory trials.

The Russian military will receive the first aircraft in 2020. By the end of 2028, the Russian Aerospace Forces will receive 22 Su-57 aircraft and by 2035 there will be about 78.

Russian Aerospace Force will be equipping its services with 12 Su-57  fighters for the Training Center to continue evaluating and optimizing the design and initially develop tactics for use.

The Su-57 fighter possesses not many advantages over Su-35 such as relatively new airframe but same radar and defense system, carries a diverse amount of weapons, and the price is more reasonable than other Russian fighters.  The Su-57 may be considered by many countries which cannot buy Western fighters or do have good diplomatic relationships with the West, including Myanmar and Vietnam.

Exposed engines of Su-57. Russia either doesn’t have the technology to make stealth aircraft or they don’t under stealth technology.

According to Soha newspaper of Vietnam, the Vietnam Air Force may buy about 12-24 Su-57 fighters in the period 2030-2035.

MenaDefense reported on December 27 that Algeria will become the first foreign country to buy a fourth-generation  fighter Su-57E (export version) from Russia.

MenaDefense said that this purchase contract has been signed by the two countries. Accordingly, Algeria will receive a batch of 12 Su-57E aircraft, 14 Su-34 fighter-bombers and 14 Su-35 multirole fighters.

A bicycle mirror placed atop cockpit of Su-57. Brilliant Soviet idea of situational awareness. Check the helmet. It is the same helmet used during 1970s Soviet aircraft.

Most of the opinions in India are that New Delhi has made a correct decision withdrawing from PAK FA program considering Su-57 lacks modern avionics, super cruise capable engine, AESA radar and most importantly stealth feature that makes a fifth-generation fighter.

It is inevitable that Russian low quality weapons used to be the core of the Vietnamese mainstay, due to all the factors: Vietnam couldn’t source western fighter jets, now Vietnam is building great relationship with the USA and Japan that will allow Vietnam source American-made fighters.

Vietnam can’t afford Su-57

Experts analyze that the Vietnamese Air Force’s interest in Russia’s fourth-generation Su-57  fighter is very natural because Vietnam is using Soviet-era Su-27 for many years.

Firstly, at this time, our country’s economic potential is limited, the budget is not large and Vietnam has to prioritize many tasks, so in the immediate future, the Vietnam Air Force may only order new equipment such as multirole fighter of the 4+ or 4++ generation to replace the nearing end of the Su-22 and increase defense capabilities.

Despite Russia’s willingness to sale Vietnam Su-57, but $2 billion for 12 units, equivalent to a unit price of nearly $166 million is a big number for Vietnam’s economy, reported Soha newspaper.

Building a modern army must be synchronous in terms of people, organization of forces, weapons, equipment, methods and levels of combat and other aspects to ensure, to respond well to mission requirements in the current situation. Therefore, Su-57 cannot be present in Vietnam soon, says Vietnamese MoD.

According to TSAMTO’s forecast that the Vietnamese Air Force could buy Russian Su-57 in the period 2030-2035 is inaccurate, because Vietnam can’t afford to buy the aircraft and associated support at a higher cost.

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