Embraer Super Tucano now has variant for NATO

A-29N turboprop includes equipment and features compatible with NATO operational requirements in an effort to seek first customer on the continent

Embraer announced the launch of a new variant of the Super Tucano light attack aircraft, the A-29N. According to the company, the focus of the aircraft is to meet the needs of European nations, especially NATO member countries.

The version was unveiled at the LAAD 2023 defense and security event in Rio de Janeiro on April 12.

“This is a new stage in the operational life of the A-29 Super Tucano,” said Bosco da Costa Junior, President and CEO of Embraer Defense and Security. “We see many application possibilities for the A-29N at the moment. Several European countries have shown interest in specific aircraft capabilities that we have now introduced with this version.”

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According to Embraer, the A-29N includes equipment and features compatible with NATO operational requirements, including a new datalink system and single-pilot operation. Training devices will also be upgraded to military organization standards, including virtual, augmented, and mixed reality.

A-29 Super Tucano (Embraer)

With these features and capabilities, the Brazilian manufacturer says the aircraft can serve, for example, in JTAC (Joint Terminal Attack Controller) training missions.

Portugal could be the first customer of the A-29N

NATO member, Portugal can be the first customer of the new A-29N. In March, the Portuguese Council of Ministers approved a budget of 5.5 billion euros for the purchase of war material until 2034, including approaching air support aircraft, the Super Tucano category.

Short Tucano
Short Tucano

Although the Portuguese Air Force (FAP) has not yet formulated a close air support aircraft acquisition program, the Brazilian aircraft would have been favored from the start.

Among the reasons is the strong presence of Embraer in Portugal, which has a support center for the Super Tucano in the country, at the facilities of OGMA (Portuguese subsidiary of Embraer), in Alverca.

There is also FAP’s proximity to the Brazilian company in the context of the C-390 Millennium program, which has Portugal as a strategic partner and the airlifter’s first external customer.

The first KC-390 of Portuguese Air Force (Embraer)

Embraer’s best-selling military aircraft in recent years, the A-29 Super Tucano is deployed by air forces on almost every continent, available in 15 countries.

Europe, however, is still unexplored territory for the attack and advanced training turboprop manufactured in Brazil, unlike the T-27 Tucano, from which it originated.

The trainer aircraft launched in the 1980s flew in the French and UK air forces, but was withdrawn from service in the past decade.


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