SOURCE: DEEPAK HILORI/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria spelled out for the first time that Indian Air Force (IAF) is looking for a jet in the middle-weight and is in the Rafale class to procure 114 jets for the IAF in Global Tender which has seen fighter jets from Light and even from Heavy Class competing in what is often described has worlds biggest fighter jet competition.
Rafale class reference confirms that IAF is looking for jet which is around 25 tonnes in Max takeoff weight eliminating many of the jets which are competing, making way for only three jets which fit the bill for the IAF thus eliminating 5 jets who are looking to bid in the tender process.
Mikoyan MiG-35, Dassault Rafale, and Eurofighter Typhoon are only three jets which are under 25 tonnes in Max takeoff weight, While Gripen E and F-16-V are both below 20 tonnes in Max takeoff weight. Sukhoi Su-35, F-15EX which are usually classified as Heavy Weight Class fighter have Max takeoff weight over 35 tonnes which clearly will be rejected.
F-18 E/F has Max takeoff weight under 30 tonnes but it is still 5-6 tonnes over what can be described as Medium Class fighter jets and bordering close to Heavy class fighter jets. In the previous MMRCA Tender, only Dassault Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon jets had cleared all Technical Trials