The BBC reports on the irony of the Scorpion being so inexpensive and workable but on one is buying.
Two US fighter jets were due to make their international debuts this week at the year’s most important aerospace event, the Farnborough Airshow. At the moment, only one of them is here.
The F-35 Lightning II may be the world’s most expensive, most advanced military jet programme, but it was a cheap and cheerful budget aircraft that managed the trans-Atlantic crossing to Farnborough.
The Scorpion costs about $20m (£12m) a throw, is built from off-the-shelf components, and went from drawing board to first flight in 23 months.
The F-35 Lightning, conceived in the early 1990s and costing about $157m, is still in the US while engineers figure out what caused a fire that has grounded the entire fleet.
OK, making comparisons is unfair; the Scorpion and F-35 are lightyears apart in specification and functionality. But it is still slightly ironic.