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F-16 vs Gripen


The F-16 Fighting Falcon is about 25 years old, but remains a star performer. A fast and potent dogfighter, it is equally at home destroying enemy tanks or positions at tree-top level. This relatively lightweight and inexpensive warplane introduced electronic flight controls and other hi-tech wizardry, and its radar, missiles and cannon make it a genuine ‘Top Gun’, respected by friend and foe alike.

A The F-16 pilot has at his command the West’s premier light-fighter. The view from the cockpit is outstanding, thanks to the massive one-piece bubble canopy.

Perhaps the best-known F-16s are those of the USAF’s Thunderbirds team. The F-16 gives them excellent agility matched with noise and speed.

Israel has been using the Fighting Falcon since the early 1980s. The aircraft’s combat debut came with the destruction of Iraq’s Osirak nuclear facility in 1981, and over Lebanon in 1982 Israeli F-16s shot down 44 Syrian MiGs without loss.

The F-16 is proof that one aircraft can move back the boundaries of aviation. This marvelous warplane introduced lightweight computers, ‘fly-by-wire’ electronic controls and a breathtaking arsenal of hi-tech weaponry.

Engineers saw the F-16 as a no-frills ‘hot rod’. It gained weight with the addition of improved radar and weaponry, but is smaller and more nimble than many fighters. Used mainly to drop bombs, the Fighting Falcon can turn and fight with unbridled fury when provoked and was one of the first operational ‘fly-by-wire’ aircraft, its controls being electronically-operated and computer-controlled. The pilot sits in a seat which reclines at 30″ to withstand high manoeuvres, allowing the gut-wrenching turns that give the F-16 an advantage over its rivals.


F-16 Fighting Falcon versus Saab Jas-39 Gripen

CATEGORY

F-16 Fighting Falcon

Saab 39 Gripen

Unit cost in USD millions

45-55

40-60

Fuel economy in km/l

0,87

1,14

Fuel economy in NM/g

2,04

2,67

Fuel tank capacity in litres

3980

2800

Fuel tank capacity in gallon

1051

739

Range on internal fuel in km

3460

3200

Range on internal fuel in miles

2145,2

1984

Range on internal fuel in NM

1868,4

1728

Powerplant/Engines

1 × F110-GE-100

1 × Volvo Aero RM12

Dry thrust in kN

1 x 76

1 x 54

Dry thrust in lbf

1 x 17000

1 x 12000

Afterburner in kN

1 x 127

1 x 80

Afterburner in lbf

1 x 28500

1 x 18000

Max. Speed in Mach

2,00

2,00

Max. Speed in km/h

2450

2450

Max. Speed in mph

1522

1522

Minimal thrust/weight ratio

0,69

0,58

Normal thrust/weight ratio

1,09

0,94

Maximal thrust/weight ratio

1,60

1,23

Overall length in meters

15,05

14,80

Overall length in ft

49,36

48,54

Wingspan in meters

9,95

8,40

Wingspan in ft

32,64

27,55

Height in meters

4,88

4,50

Height in ft

16,01

14,76

Wing area in sq meters

27,90

30,00

Wing area in sq ft

300,20

322,80

Empty weight in kg

8500

6800

Empty weight in lb

18700

14960

Maximal take-off weight in kg

19200

14000

Maximal take-off weight in lb

42240

30800

Minimal wing-loading in kg/m2

300

260

Normal wing-loading in kg/m2

430

341

Maximal wing-loading in kg/m2

688

548

Rate of climb in m/sec

254

254

Rate of climb in ft/min

50013

50013

First flight

1974

1988

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