The head of Rostec, Sergey Chemezov, informed during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday (18) that the Su-75 Checkmate advanced fighter will start production in 2027 instead commencing in 2025, as it was previously expected.

The new deadline already considers the impacts of the sanctions Russia is going through because of its invasion of Ukraine, which forced Rostec to reprioritize its initiatives.

The nickname refers to the term «Checkmate», the chess maneuver that ends the game by leaving the king trapped. The prototype of the aircraft was unveiled in the middle of last year during the Moscow Airshow 2021.

The fighter follows similar lines to the Su-57, Russia’s fifth generation stealth aircraft. The vertical, fully movable fins are V-shaped, the nose is very reminiscent of the Felon, but obviously, being single-engine, the air intake is totally different: at an acute angle, under the cockpit, and with a bulkhead along the centerline. The motorization has not yet been revealed, but the engine should feature vector thrust, with the nozzle shaft able to change both up and down.

The Su-57 Checkmate has the nose landing gear shifted to the left side of the aircraft and features a Flir on the front of the spherical-conforming cockpit, just like the one on the Su-57. Also of interest are the trapezoidal wingtips, capable of carrying the latest sets of armaments.

In terms of performance, the aircraft would have a payload of 7.4 tons, a top speed of Mach 1.8 and a combat range of 1,700 kilometers without additional fuel tanks. It was also stated that the new aircraft is capable of maneuvering at 8g and flying at supersonic speeds.

The aircraft will also be able to operate UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) and will therefore be able to build on the experience gained from the Su-57, which is integrating with the S-70 Okhotnik-B UCAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle).

As reported by our partner Aeroin, the flyaway cost of the aircraft, according to Rostec, should be around $25 to $30 million: not much compared to the market segment in which it is positioned, which includes the Swedish Jas-39 Gripen, the Eurofighter Typhoon, the Dassault Rafale and Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Lightning II.

Checkmate is a product that was designed to enable exports, particularly to African countries, India, South America, and Vietnam, as stated by Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov, but should also equip the Russian Air Force itself, as experts in the field expect.

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