Sukhoi Checkmate, the latest Russian fifth-generation single-engine fighter jet project, will be presented at the 2021 Dubai Airshow. 

The news was announced by the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade on November 2, 2021.

“The static exposition of the Russian [aerospace] technology is going to feature a prototype of a light tactical aircraft Checkmate, as well as KA-226T and Mi-171A2 helicopters,” Denis Manturov, the minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, is quoted by state news agency TASS. 

According to TASS, Rosoboronexport, a state agency for Russia’s defense exports, said that Checkmate evoked “great interest” abroad, and has already attracted inquiries from potential customers.

A mock-up of the Checkmate was unveiled at the MAKS airshow on July 20, 2021. When complete, the aircraft will be a fifth-generation single-engine supersonic fighter jet with stealth features, intended to compete with the US-made Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II. 

The jet’s maiden flight is said to be scheduled for 2023, while the serial production is intended to start in 2026. 

Rostec considers the United Arab Emirates (UAE), along with Argentina, Vietnam and India, as the main potential customers for the jet, as well as a number of Middle Eastern, South American and African countries. According to some sources, the aircraft was designed in cooperation with the UAE, or at least with UAE’s fighter jet tender in mind.

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Manturov also said that Rostec is going to showcase a business jet version of the Sukhoi Superjet 100, the upgraded Irkut MC-21-310 mainline jet with PD-14 engines, the Orion medium-altitude long-endurance combat drone, and several other new products of the Russian aerospace industry.

Dubai Airshow 2021 will run between November 14-18 at Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC)