The United States Department of Defense approved the new schedule for the VC-25B, the new US presidential aircraft.
The first new aircraft will be delivered in September 2026, two years later than initially expected, while the second one could arrive in 2027 or early 2028, according to the information revealed by Boeing Defense CEO Ted Colbert in a press briefing on July 17, 2022.
The development follows numerous issues Boeing encountered with the construction of the aircraft, as well as the company’s attempts to negotiate a delay and a higher price.
The project went $1.1 billion over budget, a sum that Boeing agreed to cover, because the original $3.9 billion contract was a fixed-price one.
“The goal right now is to deliver two great airplanes to the federal government, to our customer, to the Air Force,” BColbert said, according to Breaking Defense.
“We made changes to the program, we made changes to the way we work on the program, to the attributes of the program that are most important to have been successful. We are going to learn the lessons from supply chain perspective, from a talent perspective, from a facilities perspective,” he continued.
VC-25B, based on the Boeing 747-8, is going to replace the Boeing VC-25A, which entered service in the early 1990s and is still in use.
The design process for the new Air Force One started in 2016, with plans for the first aircraft to be delivered in 2024.