The Air Force wants to own enough of the technical
baseline to permit competition for sustainment
throughout the aircraft’s planned 30-year life cycle.
Competition can keep costs down, spur innovation and
“We are committed to
incorporating competition for subsystems of the
missionized aircraft as much as practicable, and will
participate substantively in any competitions led by the
prime contractor,” James said.
“The current fleet of VC-25 presidential aircraft has
performed exceptionally well, a testament to the Airmen
who support, maintain and fly the aircraft,” James said.
“Yet, it is time to upgrade. Parts obsolescence,
diminishing manufacturing sources and increased down
times for maintenance are existing challenges that will
increase until a new aircraft is fielded.
“The Air Force provides the president with safe and
reliable air transportation with high levels of security
and communication capability as the alternate airborne
White House,” she added. “This platform will meet the
requirements necessary to provide that level of service
for future presidents.”
“The program will use multiple strategies, such as the
use of proven technologies and commercially certified
equipment, to ensure the program is as affordable as
possible while still meeting mission requirements,”
James said. “We will insist upon program affordability
through cost conscious procurement practices.”