We just got word through the grapevine that a V-22 multi-year plan has been reached between Bell-Boeing and the government. The plan guarantees a buy of 167 Ospreys for $10.4 billion. That's about $62 million per aircraft, which is above the unit flyaway target of $58 million, but considerably down from the $72 million or so price of recent years.
This multi-year plan has been in works for years. Sticky points were the wording of the commitment letter and the details surrounding "reopeners" - the caveats that would allow the government to renegotiate the terms in the future.
Meanwhile, word from the front is the V-22 has morphed into the VIP transport of choice due to its speed and smooth ride. (Even John McCain was ferried around in one during his recent visit.)
(Gouge - SC)