The KF-21 Boramae (Hawk) fighter already has a two-seat variant. Developed by Korean Aerospace Industries (KAI), the fighter jet is expected to replace former US planes like the F-4 Phantom and F-5 Tiger II that still fly with RoKAF, the Republic of Korea Air Force.
The two-seater KF-21 was revealed by images that reached social media and also show other prototypes in final assembly at KAI’s facilities. Despite the stealthy forms, the Boramae is considered a 4.5 generation fighter, that is, not as advanced as the Lockheed F-35, for example.
KAI held the presentation of the aircraft last year, but so far the maiden flight has not been carried out. According to the South Korean government, the first flight should take place in 2022.
South Korea has high hopes for the local project to the point of planning an order for around 160 aircraft – the total number of twin-seat versions is still unknown.
The two-seat prototype was given the designation KF-21 004, in reference to the production sequence. Despite not adopting all the technology to be considered a 5th generation fighter, the Boramae has a flexible platform, which can be updated in the future, guarantees KAI.
According to the manufacturer, the final version of the KF-21 will be able to fly at a maximum speed of Mach 1.8 (2,222 km/h) and will have a maximum weight of 25,400 kg. The fighter has 10 attachment points for weapons and sensors on the wings and fuselage, which goes against the philosophy of building stealth fighters, which carry their weapons in internal compartments.