Is HAL Tejas really a junk fighter aircraft?



Rahul .Gokhale

Whether it is junk or not depends largely on how you define junk. For e.g. if a good fighter to you means, the SU 30MKI, or the Rafale or the EF Typhoon then yes compared to those, Tejas falls significantly short on virtually all parameters and it is indeed junk. If by a good aircraft you mean something that can replace the ageing MIG 21 fleet and the capabilities of that aircraft and provide a support role for IAF’s front line jets then no, Tejas is more than capable of fulfilling that role.

The important point to ne is that Tejas is not a product but rather a process. The real question we need to ask is whether its really indigenous and to that my answer is no. Virtually most critical sy ems are imported and India needs to work on develo these regardless if that means reinventing the wheel.

My personal oion is HAL ran into a lot of problems because Kaveri engine was a failure and the plane was designed for that engine. Ideally such an important and critical component should have been outsourced and focus should have been on develo other subsy ems around the engine. If i had any control of the process, 1) i would privatize and distribute development across the nation rather than relying solely on HAL, and more importantly, 2) hire russian designers at exorbitant pay scales to speed up development. HAL on its own just doesnt inspire much confidence.





Mubashar Fiaz, Aviation Enthusiast & Military Buff

Not entirely but its combat radius is too low need refueling after every 40 mins low thrust to weight ratio, inferior ferry range. But the actual tragedy is that it is too expensive for air forces which want to replace their previous generation obsolete fighter like F 4, Mig 21, F 5, F 15 etc, would be a nightmare. Although it has good avionics in MK 1 would be made better and upcoming MK 1A and MK 2 but their entry in international market will be too late, till that air forces will be relying on ch but good fighters like its biggest competitor Jf 17 Thunder block 2 and upcoming block 3. MK 1 has a bit higher price and according to Wikipedia MK1 A will cost about 63 million dollars higher then Gripen E, well, JF 17 block 3 will cost half of it about 32 million. So, it will be better for those airforces to procure JF 17 block 3 to build up their numbers. And MK 1 of tejas did meet its projected time about 2017 and now is 2019.

Into simpler words we can classify tejas as;

“a good aircraft but too expensive and particularly too late to grasp muli billion dollars market of lightweight single engine aircraft.”

译文来源:三泰虎 http://www.santaihu.com/47808.html 

不完全是,但它的战斗半径太低了,每40分钟需要加油一次,推力重量比低,射程较短。但真正的悲剧是,对于空军来说,它太昂贵了,他们想要更换掉上一代过时的战斗机,如f4、Mig 21、f5、f15等,会是一场噩梦。虽然光辉战机配置了MK1上优秀的航空电子设备,可以超过MK 1A和MK 2,但他们进入国际市场的时间太迟了。MK1的价格稍高一些,根据维基百科MK1 A比鹰狮E贵6300万美元,JF 17 block 3只需一半的价格,约3200万美元。所以,对空军来说,最好是采购JF 17 block 3来增加他们的战斗机数量。光辉战机的MK 1预计投放市场的时间是2017年左右,但现在已经2019年了。




Arnab Kumar Chatterjee, studied at Rkmv,, Belur

Let's put things in perspective.there are many light fighter in world. Pakistan inducted JF17.



Korean Inducted their FA50.



Both vastly inferior to Tejas….



Tejas can do everything that a 4.5gen fighter can. Only differences are that it has less payload capacity , lower TWR a(still above 1), lower combat radius, lesser numbers.but these are only limited to first 20. SP20 onwards it will have refuelling probe. Mk1a will have EW, higher payload,more space for internal fuel, better service and maintenance records, more manuals, more Assembly lines.and also an AESA Radar.thus it will effectively be in the leagues of gripen C or D.




If anybody thinks that's junk, …..,they are handsomely being paid by uncle Sam for sure,…and that includes the armchair defence experts in media, and also the various defence forums in the internet who have no knowledge about military hardware and technology.



Anandh Krishna

Originally Answered: Is India's LCA Tejas fighter jet a failure?

No. Its not..

You’ll get a lot tech based answers so i’ll stick to other things..

Even if that thing never took off from the ground it would’ve been a success.

India built key technologies during the development of this aircraft. Designed and manufactured a modern fighter jet.

The experience alone makes it worth while. Established a production line.. now they are bringing private companies in to the mix, to make it faster.. better and more domestic.. this will help private and public companies alike.. and keep the money inside India. These companies will also gain experience in manufacturing of aeronautical technologies and equipment. In the future they will set up there own research facilities (some of them already did) and develop technology.. which will create a healthy Defense Industry, which is very important for a large military like India’s.

So.. Even if that thing never took off from the ground it would’ve been a success.


不。不是. .





所以. .即使那东西没有从地面起飞,也是成功的。


Anil Mishra, former Specialist in Multi Layer Missile &Radar Defence

Originally Answered: Is India's LCA Tejas fighter jet a failure?

No, It can not be said to be a failure. This project is basically for technology demonstration . Things will improve as new Squadrons are introduced. As of now the fighter seems to be decent in its role of interceptor. Amount of research needed and improvements incorporated in any new project of this magnitude need time and lot of efforts . We will make it even better in due course of time. We have everything but more funds are required to realize drawing board's wonders. Why this perception is allowed to develop in public is beyond my understanding. Make in India will help the project in coming decades. India is launching itself in a big way in won manufacturing involving missiles, fighter jets , SAMs, helicopters , artillery guns of more than 150mm and armored carriers etc. Let us support it and not loose heart by few adverse reviews by some people probably with vested interest. Jai hind.




Sameer Verma, Equal Partner (2017-present)

Originally Answered: Is India's LCA Tejas fighter jet a failure?

Compared to?

Understand the philosophy of fighter requirements first…

The gt and Airforce wanted a homegrown fighter as part of our defence requirements and national tech building agenda…

It was understood from day one that the Mig 21, 23, 27 will eventually live out their usefulness like any other tech in ones life….

So began the design and manufacture of a worthy replacement of these migs from scratch….

If u can ignore the hysteria of the time line and supposedly delays associated with the LCA u will realize that this fighter with its original kaveri engine was far superior to the Mig 21 series as well as jaguars…which was and still is the main fighter in numbers…

By the time the first LCA flew after delays in funds, sanctions etc…it surpassed all the requirements it was initially tasked with….doesnt matter how much of it is imported components…that was and is being tackled as a separate project with results frutifying…









The Airforce will always have 3 teirs of ops…

1.defence and short range offense and defence of border and army and naval ops..conventional and non nuclear warfare

2.Medium range ops going deeper and wider opa ag inst strategic targets of the enemy..conventional and nuclear if needed

3.Long range offensive ops really deep into enemy territory…conventional and nuclear

For the first category now mig 21s, mig 29s, jags and mirage 2000s…with the gauranteed phasing out of these series in the next decade or so the lca was and is a perfect replacement…and research and upgrades would have been a part and parcel of this deal…

not the fault of drdo and other labs if they were not funded and supported well in time to adpat to the changes needed by the airforce and gt…and yet need their backsides kicked for not performing as desired….both are fault in their own ways… .








Jitendra Jha, studied at Kendriya Vidyya No. 3, New Delhi

Not a junk

Equipped with a modern Israeli multi-mode radar, the Elta 2032, state-of-the-art Derby air-to-air missiles to attack enemy jets, and modern laser designator and targeting pods to hit ground targets

The aircraft is fitted with a night vision compatible glass cockpit with Martin Baker (UK) zero-zero ejection seats.

The aircraft’s structure is composed of 42% carbon fibre composites, 43% aluminium alloy and the remainder titanium alloy.

The aircraft can travel at a mamum speed of 2,205 km/hr for FOC version and 2,000 km/hr for IOC version.


光辉战机装备了现代以色列多模雷达,Elta 2032,最先进的德比空对空导弹来攻击敌军的飞机,还有现代激光指示器和目标舱能打击地面目标





Himanshu Pattanayak, studied at Dr. B. R. Ambedkar National Institute of Technology, Jndhar

LCA is neither the best aircraft nor it is a junk. it’s a reasonably good aircraft for our needs. It is light weight multi role aircraft which do various tasks such as intercept, ground attack and air superiority up to some extent. Naval version of the aircraft is also being developed. It’s a 4.5 generation aircraft with all the Morden technology that a 4.5 generation should aircraft possess, specially the Mk1A. It has got newer technologies like AESA radar, mid air refueling capability, fly by wire, BVR capability. The aircraft is designed for low operational and maintenance cost and suits to our requirements. It’s has high percentage of composite carbon materials which make is lighter and agile. Since it is not a foreign aircraft we can install our own wons. The aircraft has created a aerospace manufacturing base in India.



Deepak Kumar

TEJAS is a good fighter plane and in coming years it would be great after lot of enhancements.

remember even US/russian fighters lot of models lot of problems were there.

lot of problems were solved in upgrades.

all major fighter producing companies took not less than 35–40 years to produce a good model.

so lets give time to our tejas to settle down

problem is our forces keep changing specs dailly.

first they want single engine then twin engine, then mmra model, then aircraft carrier version, it should climb everest and so on.

you cannot have everything in one version.

this fighter was designed to replace mig-21 lower end fighters











Satheesh Narayanan, Logical thinker without taking any stances

Yes it's a Junk to a Dumb Head

An advice to those who think it's a Junk is “Just grow up people”.

There is no point in comparing Tejas with F16 or something. The sane way is to compare it with its own intended purpose of Design. Simple example is when you are start designing with an intension of transporting atleast 7 people with a budget of less than 7 lakhs then the out come would be Maruti EECO or at max Ertiga. Even after achieving Ertiga standard people comparing it with Innova or Tavera is shear stupidity..!!

Either your base design should be increased or stop comparing it..,



把光辉战机和F16之类的作比较是没有意义的。明智的方法是将其与设计的预期目的进行比较。简单的例子是,当你开始设计时,你的目标是用少于70万卢比的预算运送至少7个人,那么最终的结果将是玛鲁蒂汽车 EECO或max Ertiga。



Radhakrishnan V Nair, Consultant at Archaid Architects, Bangalore (1994-present)

It is not a junk fighter, but merely a platform on which a lot of add ons need to be built. That, if it happens, will take a couple of decades and may still fall short of current equivalents. Therefore, without discounting indegeneous efforts, we need to move on a parallel where a quantum l is necessary. We dont have to discount HAL’s efforts when we accept the facts of a PSU undertaking which may not mive at the speed the times demand! The HAL has a lot of flab like other PSUs and it is very hard for it to trim it and become lean, hungry snd efficient just like other simil set ups like BSNL and AIR- INDIA. Like someone said, it is not the grace of the elephant’s dance but the fact that the elephant can dance at all that we need to appreciate!



Rohit Banerjee, 9 years of part time defence analysis.

Yes indeed a really junk fighter, just like the other 4.5th gen junk fighters like Eurofighter Typhoons, Dassault Rafales, Su-30MKI, Gripen ,etc.

是的,这确实是一架真正的垃圾战斗机,就像其他4.5代垃圾战斗机一样,如欧洲台风战斗机、达索阵风战斗机、苏- 30mki、鹰狮战斗机等。


Sauro Dasgupta, YouTuber (2018-present)

It’s brilliant.

A 4.5–5th generation aircraft.


它是4.5 - 5代飞机。

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