Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) will supply the Pentagon with 71 more F-35 fighter jets under a principle agreement, confirming reports from unnamed sources that came out earlier this week.
The 71 planes represent the Joint Strike Fighter program’s low-rate initial production lots six and seven and will be offered for a lower price, Lockheed Martin announced Tuesday.
The company said that LRIP-6 costs about four percent lower than LRIP-5. The LRIP-7 contract will cost eight percent lower than LRIP-5.
Under the contract, Lockheed will begin delivery of the 36 F-35s in LRIP-6 by mid-2014 and the remaining 35 aircrafts in LRIP-7 by mid-2015.
The LRIP-6 and LRIP-7 F-35s will be delivered to the U.S. and partner nations Australia, Norway, United Kingdom and Italy.
“At the start of these negotiations, the F-35 Joint Program Office and our F-35 team jointly committed to conduct LRIP-6 and -7 negotiations in an efficient manner that leveraged all we achieved from the LRIP-5 contract, ” said Lorraine Martin, Lockheed Martin F-35 vice president and general manager.
Since the program’s inception, Lockheed Martin has delivered 67 F-35s to the Defense Department and eight partner nations.