The first Japanese-assembled F-35A was unveiled at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Komaki South F-35 Final Assembly and Check Out (FACO) facility in Nagoya, Japan, yesterday. The Japan F-35 FACO is operated by MHI with technical assistance from Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and oversight from the U.S. Government.
Approximately 200 people attended the ceremony including Japanese and United States government and defense industry leaders. The ceremony highlighted the strong partnership between the Japanese Ministry of Defense, U.S. Department of Defense, MHI and Lockheed Martin.
The Japanese Ministry of Defense competitively selected the F-35A as the JASDF's next-generation air defense fighter in December 2011, with a Foreign Military Sales program of record of 42 F-35As. The first four JASDF F-35As were previously delivered from the Fort Worth, Texas, production facility. Subsequent deliveries of 38 F-35A aircraft will come from the FACO here in Japan.
Additionally, the U.S. Department of Defense selected the Nagoya FACO in 2014 for the North Asia-Pacific regional heavy airframe Maintenance Repair Overhaul & Upgrade (MROU) facility.
The F-35 Lightning II is a next-generation fighter, combining advanced stealth with fighter speed and agility, advanced mission systems, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and cutting-edge sustainment.
More than 220 operational F-35s have been built and delivered worldwide and they have collectively flown more than 95,000 flight hours.