JAS39C (Great Britain)

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This page is about the Fighter aircraft JAS39C (Great Britain). For other versions, see SAAB 39 Gripen (Family).
▄JAS39C
saab_jas39c_south_africa.png
GarageImage JAS39C (Great Britain).jpg
▄JAS39C
AB RB SB
13.0 13.0 13.0
Research:410 000 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:1 100 000 Specs-Card-Lion.png
Show in game

Description

During the early 1980s, the South African Air Force (SAAF) was looking for a replacement for its aging Cheetah fleet, which was a locally upgraded version of the French Mirage III. The Cheetahs were subject to an arms embargo due to the apartheid regime, which limited their availability and effectiveness. In 1999, after a long and controversial procurement process, South Africa signed a contract with Saab for 26 Gripens (17 JAS39C and 9 JAS39D), becoming the first export customer of the type. The delivery of the South African Gripens started in 2008 and was completed in 2012. Since then, the South African Gripens have been involved in several operations, both at home and abroad. In 2010, they secured the airspace during the FIFA World Cup hosted by South Africa. In 2013, they provided air support for South African peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and also participated in the funeral of Nelson Mandela, the former president and anti-apartheid leader. However, the South African Gripens have faced some challenges in their service, such as budget constraints, maintenance issues, and political controversies. Due to the high cost of operating the jets, the SAAF has limited their flying hours and reduced their operational readiness. The SAAF has also struggled to maintain the jets' spare parts and technical support, which have been affected by the corruption allegations against Saab. Furthermore, the Gripen deal has been criticized by some sectors of society as unnecessary and wasteful, especially in light of the country's social and economic problems. These issues became more evident when South Africa had to ground its fleet of Gripens in September 2021 due to budget cuts and maintenance problems, which led to concerns about the country's air defense capabilities.

The ▄JAS39C Gripen was introduced in Update "Air Superiority". As the first South African jet in the tree, it proves worthy of its place due to its exceptional flight performance and loadout capabilities. It has a high-performance engine and a high thrust-to-weight ratio, which gives it excellent acceleration and climb rate, as well as superb agility and energy retention. It can also carry a variety of weapons for all kinds of situations, including guided bombs, AGM-65 Mavericks, active radar homing R-Darter and IR AIM-9M missiles. It's downsides are few, but noticeable: it's mainly a dogfighter and taking too much weight will nullify its strengths, and its radar, while practically inescapable, has poor accuracy.

General info

Flight performance

Air brakes
Allows you to dramatically reduce the flight speed by releasing special flaps
Max speed
at 11 000 m2 240 km/h
Turn time24 s
Max altitude14 500 m
EngineSvenska Flygmotor RM12
Type
Cooling systemAir
Take-off weight60 t
Msg-info.png Flight performance of this plane is changed very often, so information in this section may not be entirely correct by the time you read it.

The Gripen is really simple to fly, as it has nearly all mechanics on automatic controls. Use of airbrakes is manual and is recommended when the plane is diving down, especially if pilot is about to pass out, otherwise the plane might lock up and crash into ground like a meteor.

With only light anti-air weaponry, the plane easily accelerates to 1100 km/h even without afterburner, with afterburner it is possible to reach 1500 km/h (nearing self-destruct speed) and further in a level flight.

This is one of the most manoeuvrable planes in the entire game, and this mostly shows in three situations:

  • It has an extreme turn rate even with afterburner on, allowing to do a 180 degree turn on a whim when completely researched. This, however, can make the pilot pass out, as the plane also bleeds energy at an extreme rate should pilot make a poor move, so try to learn better movement patterns
  • It's possible to destabilize the plane and fall into a flat spin, but it is also one of the few planes that even a newbie can pull out of a flat spin with some effort taken
  • Even as it is half-destroyed, it can controllably drift and flip around, allowing the player to take offending party to the grave with it

Taking heavy bombs will severely hamper its flight performance. Consider using ATGMs instead, unless absolutely necessary.

Characteristics Max speed
(km/h at 11,000 m)
Max altitude
(metres)
Turn time
(seconds)
Rate of climb
(metres/second)
Take-off run
(metres)
AB RB AB RB AB RB
Stock 2,169 2,134 14500 24.1 24.1 213.2 202.8 500
Upgraded 2,327 2,240 23.9 24.0 279.5 245.0

Details

Features
Combat flaps Take-off flaps Landing flaps Air brakes Arrestor gear Drogue chute
X X X X X
Limits
Wings (km/h) Gear (km/h) Flaps (km/h) Max Static G
Combat Take-off Landing + -
1,543 620 - - - ~12 ~5
Optimal velocities (km/h)
Ailerons Rudder Elevators Radiator
< 519 < 700 < 1,543 -

Engine performance

Engine Aircraft mass
Engine name Number Basic mass Wing loading (full fuel)
Svenska Flygmotor RM12 1 6,865 kg 307 kg/m2
Engine characteristics Mass with fuel (no weapons load) Max Gross
Weight
Weight (each) Type 9m fuel 20m fuel 30m fuel 32m fuel
1,054 kg Afterburning low-bypass turbofan 7,567 kg 8,308 kg 9,032 kg 9,205 kg 13,906 kg
Maximum engine thrust @ 0 m (RB/SB) Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (WEP)
Condition 100% WEP 9m fuel 20m fuel 30m fuel 32m fuel MGW
Stationary 5,100 kgf 7,528 kgf 0.99 0.91 0.83 0.82 0.54
Optimal 5,100 kgf
(0 km/h)
10,918 kgf
(1,250 km/h)
1.44 1.31 1.21 1.19 0.79

Survivability and armour

Flares/Chaff
Aircraft countermeasures to distract IR and radar-guided missiles and also AA radar
Crew1 person
Speed of destruction
Structural0 km/h
Gear620 km/h

The Gripen itself is rather fragile, but unlike most early delta wings British players might be familiar with it has a lot of redundant controls and even the kanards on the front alone can keep the plane alive for a minute. Loss of flaps on the back can seriously hamper the ability to turn, but the plane will try to adapt. Literally losing half the wing will likely cause the plane to spin and crash, but pilot can fight it.

As long as Gripen still has at least one working flap and the kanards, it can demonstrate truly horrific feats of defiance

Taking heavy hit to the cockpit or the engine is generally fatal, but in case of engine fire the plane can still use remaining energy to fight, until the plane was completely torn to pieces.

One of the most important parts of this plane defences are the countermeasure pods - this plane by default has 80 large countermeasures and in its anti-air loadout it can have an absolutely disgusting amount of small countermeasures under its wings (up to 640). Even when firing countermeasures every 0.5 seconds (which is already enough to confuse AIM-9M and some ARH missiles) without any care in the world, the plane is unlikely to run out of countermeasures before every player on enemy team was already destroyed.

On top of high amount of countermeasures, the plane has a rather low engine temperature when the afterburner is offline, which makes it slightly easier to lose the IR missiles in the aforementioned flare spam.

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB2 696 → 4 421 Sl icon.png
RB7 782 → 12 762 Sl icon.png
SB9 164 → 15 028 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications312 000 Rp icon.png
478 000 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost3 200 Ge icon.png
Crew training310 000 Sl icon.png
Experts1 100 000 Sl icon.png
Aces3 600 Ge icon.png
Research Aces1 350 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
90 / 320 / 500 % Sl icon.png
256 / 256 / 256 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Flight performance Survivability Weaponry
Mods jet compressor.png
Compressor
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods booster.png
New boosters
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
21 000 Sl icon.png
590 Ge icon.png
Mods aerodinamic wing.png
Wings repair
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mods jet engine.png
Engine
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png
Mods aerodinamic fuse.png
Fuselage repair
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods armor frame.png
Airframe
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
21 000 Sl icon.png
590 Ge icon.png
Mods armor cover.png
Cover
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mods heli false thermal targets.png
Flares/Chaff
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mods ammo.png
akan_85_belt_pack
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 1.png
Mods air to air missile.png
AIM-9L
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 1.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
Mk82
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods thermal sight.png
LITENING II
Research:
9 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
14 000 Sl icon.png
380 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods heli false thermal targets.png
Flares/Chaff BOL
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
21 000 Sl icon.png
590 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
Mk83
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
21 000 Sl icon.png
590 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods laser guided bomb.png
GBU-12
Research:
14 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
21 000 Sl icon.png
590 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods g suit.png
G-suit
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mods weapon.png
akan_85_new_gun
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mods air to air missile.png
AIM-9M
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods atgm heli preset.png
AGM-65B
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods laser guided bomb.png
GBU-16
Research:
11 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
17 000 Sl icon.png
470 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods jet engine extinguisher.png
EFS
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png
Mods night vision device.png
NVD
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png
R-Darter
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png
Mods atgm heli preset.png
AGM-65G
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png
Mods laser guided bomb.png
GBU-24
Research:
17 000 Rp icon.png
Cost:
26 000 Sl icon.png
720 Ge icon.png

Armaments

Ballistic Computer
CCIP (Guns) CCIP (Rockets) CCIP (Bombs) CCRP (Bombs) Lead indicator
alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}} alt={{{alt}}}

Offensive armament

Main article: Akan m/85 (27 mm)

The JAS39C (Great Britain) is armed with:

  • 1 x 27 mm Akan m/85 cannon, belly-mounted (120 rpg)
  • 92 x large calibre countermeasures

The cannon is similar to 27 mm Mauser used on the Tornado F.3 with barely enough ammunition to destroy 4 planes, but it has significantly better ammunition. Belts have PELE-T shells mixed in, which are basically a better APHE (twice the explosive mass and explode backwards after destroying hit module) and anti-air belt has 2 HEF shells. Overall, the ammunition is extremely good at setting planes on fire, even if not always inherently lethal.

Radar gun assist is a bit weak due to the strong but unfocused radar - while it is next to impossible to shake it off (and very difficult to chaff), it will most of the time only work at 1.2 km and will fail to actually provide a correct aim prediction. With a gun convergence of 600 m, pilot must aim slightly ahead of the enemy plane to actually score a hit from the side.

Suspended armament

The JAS39C (Great Britain) can be outfitted with the following ordnance:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Hardpoints JAS39A.png
277 kg GBU-12 Paveway II bombs 1 1 1 1
500 lb LDGP Mk 82 bombs 2 2 2 2
500 lb Mk 82 Snakeye bombs 2 2 2 2
957 kg GBU-10 Paveway II bombs 1 1
1,000 lb LDGP Mk 83 bombs 1 1 1 1
1,092 lb GBU-16 Paveway II bombs 1 1 1 1
2,000 lb GBU-24 Paveway III bombs 1 1
AGM-65B missiles 1 1 1 1
AGM-65G missiles 1 1 1 1
AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles 1 1* 1* 1* 1* 1
AIM-9M Sidewinder missiles 1 1* 1* 1* 1* 1
R-Darter missiles 1 1 1 1
Countermeasures 160* 160* 160* 160*
LITENING II targeting pod 1
1,100 l drop tanks 1 1 1
Maximum permissible weight imbalance: 1,250 kg
* Countermeasures can be equipped with AIM-9L/-9M missiles on the same hardpoint
LITENING II pod must be equipped when equipping guided bombs
Default weapon presets
  • 3 x 1,100 l drop tanks
  • 2 x AIM-9M Sidewinder missiles
  • 6 x AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles
  • 6 x AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles + 640 x countermeasures
  • 6 x AIM-9M Sidewinder missiles
  • 6 x AIM-9M Sidewinder missiles + 640 x countermeasures
  • 4 x R-Darter missiles
  • 4 x R-Darter missiles + 640 x countermeasures
  • 640 x countermeasures
  • 8 x 500 lb LDGP Mk 82 bombs (4,000 lb total)
  • 8 x 500 lb Mk 82 Snakeye bombs (4,000 lb total)
  • 4 x 1,000 lb LDGP Mk 83 bombs (4,000 lb total)
  • 4 x AGM-65B missiles
  • 4 x AGM-65G missiles
  • 4 x 277 kg GBU-12 Paveway II bombs (1,108 kg total)
  • 4 x 1,092 lb GBU-16 Paveway II bombs (4,368 lb total)
  • 2 x 2,000 lb GBU-24 Paveway III bombs (4,000 lb total)

The Gripen has a lot of ammunition types, but you need to make a choice of what exactly are you going to do in your current battle. Two outer points (wingtips) are used for AIM-9L/M, while middle hardpoints can either carry anti-air missiles with countermeasure pods, or anti-ground weapons like bombs or ATGM. On the fuselage, an optional LITENING II or a fuel tank can be equipped.

In anti-air section, AIM-9M and R-Darter are the most interesting options. Both missiles can be used with TWS and HMD radar mode, which makes them very versatile and quite hard to detect.

AIM-9M is a smokeless IR missile that shuts off its seeker when it sees flares and tries to intercept the plane on its last known course instead of just flying wherever it wants to like the 9L, which makes it incredibly difficult to evade without consistent flare spam (and not many planes have near-infinite flares like with the British ones).

R-Darter is an ARH missile, meaning it has radar built into it and will attack planes on its own after establishing a lock. The missile is best described as Skyflash SuperTemp on steroids, as it doesn't even require sustained lock-on to fire (TWS soft lock is enough), is extremely agile and will relentlessly pursue and obliterate anything even off-screen within its optimal range, starting from 1.5 km and ending with about 13 km. The missile lock-on range is about 16 km, but it will do its best to trace chosen target until then by using IOG instead of self-destructing, though when launched at a target from very far away, it will try to loft (fly in space to then fall down) and will naively spend all of its energy on actively turning enemies, so using R-Darter at a long range is not very recommended (unless fired from space to begin with). The missile will use DL (data link) to correct itself and report it's own progress, basically being also linked to the plane's radar the whole time, which makes it visible on the radar display and lets it to take notes every time TWS (or even a direct lock-on) paints the chosen target.

In anti-ground section, AGM-65G are the most interesting addition to already known ammunition (same as on Harrier GR.7). It's essentially a giant SAP shell, filled with so much explosives that it might as well be HE. Since it's IR guided, it is fire-and-forget type of launch and can be used at night. One of it's major downsides is that it could in theory be intercepted by APS or blocked off by smoke screens, unlike a regular or laser bomb.

Usage in battles

The JAS39C (Great Britain) is the crown jewel of the British Aviation tech tree, sitting at one whole Battle Rating above any and all other planes. It is the most versatile fighter, ground striker, dogfighter and interceptor out of the British tree, and one of the most capable planes in game, thanks to its amazing manoeuvrability, low speed flight characteristics and suite of ordnance. While it can use a combination of IR missiles, radar missiles, guided bombs and AGMs, it does not feature more than 4 fully customizable hardpoints, along with the 2x AIM-9Ms from the wingtips. this means that you can have one radar missile, one IR missile with Countermeasures pod, one guided bomb and one AGM, ontop of fuel and a LITENING II targetting pod. The ability to take such custom loadouts makes this plane very versatile and suitable for a large number of roles in Air-to-Air combat and Air-to-Ground combat.

Air Realistic battles

This plane should carry 6 missiles. Two wingtip AIM-9L/M which should always be carried. On the remaining 4 hardpoints, the JAS39C (Great Britain) can take any combination of AIM-9L/M, AIM-9L/M on Countermeasure pods (which is obviously preferred over the AIM-9L/M with no countermeasure pods), or the same with R-Darter Radar missiles instead. The best combination and missile balance is decided by the user, though R-Darter is more inherently lethal and versatile, at a cost of being mildly vulnerable to chaff.

The Gripen is a very fuel efficient plane. You can fly it extra light at minimum fuel (9 minutes) along with the fuel pod if you do not plan to afterburn all the way to the middle of the map. This fuel loadout ensures you are the lightest possible, while giving you enough fighting time. You can always drop the fuel tank to become insanely nimble, however you should not drop below 2 minutes of fuel. You can get back to base with around 1 minute if you climb, keep your speed and start from high speed from the middle of the map, however 2 minutes insures you can also defend yourself in case anyone chases you. You can take any combination of fuel + fuel pod, however you should not have more than 30 minutes of total fuel. Flight performance suffers with more than 25 minutes of total fuel.

It should be noted that the Gripen, as a very small fighter with an efficient engine is a very cold target compared to dual-engine fighters that can fight against it, giving enemies a very hard time locking IR missiles on it, and making it very easy to defend against IR missiles.

The Gripen can be used in multiple ways:

  • Furball Fighter - Taking a full load of missiles and countermeasures. Periodic flares can be used this way along with the relatively cold engine of the Gripen, making you almost invulnerable to IR missiles. This however means than you want to be as light as possible, so taking minimum fuel and dropping the fuel pod as you enter the fight is very crucial. You should then target enemies that are not spamming flares with AIM-9M and crash anything too agressive with R-Darters. If the AIM-9M has at least 2-3 seconds of flight without seeing one flare, it is pretty much guaranteed to hit. If a lot of people are trying to set up for a head-on, you can literally destroy half of the enemy party with R-Darters before they can even get an angle on you, as R-darter can intercept targets that arent even on your screen. You can even fire at their backs as they begin their loops, but you will have to use HMD and may accidentally crash into ground if not paying attention, so take care
  • Interceptor - This involves taking R-Darter missiles and trying to pick off targets by firing at them via TWS or by sneaking on them from low ground and firing into their face from 10 km away. It is very effective because R-Darter has stupidly high manoeuvrability while it has a booster, and multiple planes can be blasted in one volley since they are ARH and do not require babysitting after initial lock like the Skyflashes. Since R-Darter lofts (goes up to fall down) really hard and doesn't turn much after the booster is gone, it is not very good for long range fights (planes with AIM-120A will win by default unless you double tap them after they change flight direction and keep draining the missile energy by going left and right), but you can fire it at targets that are 20 km away and going along the ground or behind a mountain while you are also on at the same elevation without exposing yourself overly much (it will go up, lock on and then fall on them from about 30 degree angle). It also can conserve energy when chasing someone from behind by looming above them, so if enemy pilot gets distracted for 10 seconds it will fall on their face. Sometimes, when fired from about 25 km, the R-Darters will just find and kill their targets on their own, but keeping the TWS or lock on a plane will reduce possibility of chaff and aerobatics working on it.

The Gripen is one of the best suited planes in Air Realistic due to its low heat signature, low fuel consumption, HMD, and strong IR missiles, However this does not mean it is not as good in:

Ground Realistic Battles

The Gripen has access to a good variety of guided munitions. You can chose between using GBU-12s, GBU-16s and GBU-24s (only on the inner-most pylons) and AGM-65B/Gs which can all be guided with the LITENING II targetting pod. One of the best targetting pods in war thunder, with good thermal sight resolution. This gives the Gripen the ability to take out any ground target effectively, and still be able to engage enemy Air due to its wingtip AIM-9M missiles, which effectiveness is much greater in ground battles due to the AIM-9M's smokeless motors, meaning it is effectively invisible as it approaches the target so the enemy may not be able to pop countermeasures soon enough to wave it off.

When using this plane in GRB, taking one to two AGMs is a good idea, in order to take out enemy SPAA as quickly as possible. AGMs are preferred over GBUs due to their fire and forget nature, and higher speed.

Taking out enemy SPAAs such as the Pantsir-S1 is the first thing you should do when you spawn in. The AGMs should be fired from a maximum of 8 km, and if possible 6 km. If more than 5-10 seconds pass and you have not fired an AGM at an enemy SPAA, you should instantly dive while turning the other way. After going outside of the enemy SPAA range (18 km max) you should sideclimb and get to a comfortable altitude. Try to take out the the enemy SPAA again with the AGMs. do note that they have higher range if fired from higher altitude.

After dealing with SPAA, You can start dropping GBUs or use AGM-65G, but you need to keep in mind that another SPAA can spawn in at any moment and lock you in the IRST mode, so you should always look at the ground, and always fly defensively if possible, putting objects or terrain between you and the enemy ground spawns, keeping your speed up or not flying into straight lines for too long.

Simulator Battles

The Gripen is a very strong plane to use in simulator battles. It gets access to a lot of countermeasures, smokeless missiles, making them quite invisible even if enemies look at you when you fire in the right conditions. You get access to a good HUD that gives good information, the HMD which is amazing in SIM, a targetting pod on its own hardpoint, which is good for spotting, and a pretty good radar, with good search sectors, range and modes. TWS should be used rather than PD.

The only downside is that the Gripen has a black line running in the middle of the glass canopy, effectively cutting your visibility when in a dogfight, and the fact that it only has access to 6 missiles.

It is one of the best SIM planes due to its very stable canard design, smokeless motors and HMD. Flight performance is a bonus.

The British variant of the Gripen is identical to the Swedish Gripen, other than name and camouflages, and is one of the best planes in War Thunder due to its insanely good flight performance, good ordnance variety, strong air-to-air IR missiles and large amount of countermeasures on top of other smaller strengths. It is a plane that has very high potential and can win any situation. This is not a plane that will limit the one who is piloting it.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Very capable AIM-9M missiles, which include a seeker shutoff IRCCM and smokeless motor
  • An extremely agile R-Darter ARH missile will absolutely destroy any target at short to medium range
  • Can attack with missiles at almost any angle it wants to, as it has access to HMD and the missiles don't really require a lock-on most of the time
  • Extremely nimble and capable plane, which can pull off one-of-a-kind manoeuvres
  • Can be extremely difficult and annoying to kill
    • lots of countermeasures, more than most players will ever need
    • Able to turn, aim and fire even on the brink of death
    • High performance and low temperature engine makes it hard to lock the plane and enough thrust to keep fighting at the same time
  • High variety of ordnance including GBUs, AGMs, countermeasure pods and a good targeting pod
  • A decent range radar that is nearly impossible to chaff
  • Has special ammunition for its gun, mildly better than the other 27 mm

Cons:

  • Can only carry a maximum of 6 missiles, anti-ground ammunition removes a missile and a countermeasure pod
  • Flying it without care can cause rapid energy loss and/or G-lock
  • Flight performance suffers greatly if damaged or carrying heavy bombs
  • Missiles are not particularly good at long range
  • Pathetic amount of gun ammunition and the radar is inaccurate, requiring pilot to actually know what they are doing and maybe pick a different gun convergence than usual, or even lock planes with LITENING instead (takes time)
  • Not impossible to run out of fuel, but taking too much fuel makes the plane less agile (can be solved by bringing fuel tanks, but that requires more keybinds)

History

In the late 1990s, South Africa found a need to replace its aging fleet of Mirage and Cheetah fighter jets. Looking to modernize their fleet for not only national defense, but for a better standing for their defense modernization and strategic autonomy in the global stage, South Africa sought options in the market under the Advanced Light Fighter Aircraft (ALFA) program. The decision was made and announced in November 1998 that the Swedish-made Gripen has been chosen to fulfill the program's need, with 28 Gripens to be purchased at a price of 1.5 billion USD in 1999 (this would be changed to 26 Gripens in 2005). Alongside the purchase deal was South Africa's involvement with Saab's Industrial Participation programme, which enabled South Africa's local industries to help produce and maintain Gripen parts, such as Denel Aviation producing the rear fuselage sections of the Gripen.

South Africa received their first Gripen in 2006. The aircraft, a two-seater Gripen-D, was sent to the Test Flight Development Centre in the Southern Cape for full testing and integration of South African avionics and weapons for the country. Once fully tested and handed over to the South African Air Force (SAAF) in 2008, deliveries of Gripens directly to the South African Air Force began in the same year. By 2011, 17 Gripen-Cs and 9 Gripen-Ds have been delivered to the SAAF and equipped the 2 Squadron, located at AFB Makhado in the Limpopo province.

Although the Gripens have not yet been involved with any heavy fighting in South Africa, they have been integral to maintaining the country's air superiority. Gripens were deployed during several high-profile events in South Africa, such as during the 2010 FIFA World Cup to maintain airspace security and protection and in 2013 to escort Nelson Mandela's remains to his funeral processions and maintain no-fly zones during the funeral.

However, financial constraints have cast a shadow over the fleet's operational sustainability, leading to a notable incident in September 2021 when the Gripens were grounded due to lack of funding and maintenance and support contracts not being renewed in time. This would be resolved by September 2022, enabling the Gripens to fly again, though concerns remain on the pilot readiness after a year of grounding.

Media

Skins
Videos

See also

Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:

  • reference to the series of the aircraft;
  • links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • other literature.


Swedish Aeroplane Company Ltd. (SAAB)
  Pre-SAAB: SA / ASJA
SA 'Jaktfalken'  J6B
SAAB 17  B17A · B17B · S17BS
SAAB 18  B18A · B18B · T18B · T18B (57)
SAAB 21  J21A-1 · J21A-2 · A21A-3 · J21RA · A21RB
SAAB 29 'Tunnan'  J29A · A29B · J29D · J29F
SAAB 32 'Lansen'  J32B · A32A · A32A Röd Adam
SAAB 35 'Draken'  J35A · J35D
SAAB 37 'Viggen'  JA37C · JA37D · AJ37 · AJS37
SAAB 39 'Gripen'  JAS39A · JAS39C
SAAB 105  SK60B · SAAB-105G
License Production  B3C (Ju 86K)
Export  SAAB-105OE · J35XS · ▄JAS39C · ◔JAS39EBS HU C

Britain jet aircraft
Blackburn  Buccaneer S.1 · Buccaneer S.2 · Buccaneer S.2B
British Aerospace  Harrier GR.7 · Sea Harrier FRS.1 (e) · Sea Harrier FRS.1 · Sea Harrier FA 2
British Aircraft Corporation  Strikemaster Mk.88
English Electric  Canberra B Mk 2 · Canberra B (I) Mk 6 · Lightning F.6 · Lightning F.53
Gloster  Meteor F Mk 3 · Sea Meteor F Mk 3 · Meteor F Mk 4 G.41F · Meteor F Mk 4 G.41G · Meteor F Mk 8 G.41K · Meteor F Mk.8 Reaper
  Javelin F.(A.W.) Mk.9
de Havilland  Vampire F.B.5 · Venom FB.4 · Sea Venom FAW 20 · Sea Vixen F.A.W. Mk.2
Hawker  Sea Hawk FGA.6 · Hunter F.1 · Hunter F.6 · Hunter FGA.9 · Harrier GR.1 · Harrier GR.3
Panavia  Tornado GR.1 · Tornado F.3 · Tornado F.3 Late
SEPECAT  Jaguar GR.1 · Jaguar GR.1A · Jaguar IS
Supermarine  Attacker FB 1 · Attacker FB.2 · Scimitar F Mk.1 · Swift F.1 · Swift F.7
Foreign  Phantom FG.1 (USA) · Phantom FGR.2 (USA) · F-4J(UK) Phantom II (USA)
South Africa  ▄JAS39C
India  ▄MiG-21 Bison