Russian stealth and euro efficiency at MAKS airshow

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Russian stealth and euro efficiency at MAKS airshow

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Russia’s MAKS airshow on the outskirts of Moscow has proved a lucrative venture for Europe’s Airbus planemaker, and a valuable showcase for Russia’s own state-of-the-art military aerospace offerings.

The country’s second biggest airline Transaero signed a contract to buy eight A320neo aircraft, with an option on four more.

The value of the deal is being kept a secret but the catalogue price for eight aircraft is half a billion euros.

The medium range A320neo has fast become a top-seller in the Airbus fleet promising operators a 15 per cent fuel saving.

After signing, Transaero’s director general Olga Pleshakova said: ‘These planes are an innovation among narrow-bodied aircraft the world over, and guarantee high levels of passenger comfort and high fuel efficiency.’

Also on show to the public for the first time is Russia’s Sukhoi T-50 stealth fighter, a fifth-generation warplane intended to inject new life into the country’s defence industry following post-Soviet stagnation.

It is meant as a belated rival to America’s well-established F-22.

But the plane is still shrouded in secrecy and will only be on view in the sky, not on the ground.