The release of the request for proposal for the reopened KC-X tanker competition will not come until this week, if not later, reports The Hill, citing Pentagon sources. Pentagon acquisition officials had expected to issue the RFP last week. Boeing has thrown a wrench into Pentagon plans to complete the revised solicitation process readily and pick a winning tanker design by around the end of the year by requesting six months to properly prepare its new bid. Boeing is arguing that the draft revised solicitation issued in August points to a much different tanker than the company offered in the original KC-X contest. Northrop wants to see the process move forward unabated. It is confident that it will prevail again as it did in February in the original contest that was reopened after Boeing’s successful legal protest.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.