STOVL Still Driving Cost?

It is no secret that the Marine Corps short takeoff and landing version of the F-35 has been hampered with weight issues—but those have been solved (see “Struggling for Altitude” in our September issue)—but the STOVL version cost more. And, reports Richard Whittle in Christian Science Monitor, it is raising the cost of the entire program and causing continued consternation over just how many aircraft the US military will buy. The Air Force, which once said it would purchase at least a couple hundred STOVL F-35s, now probably won’t buy any, instead spending its scarce dollars on revamping the A-10.