The Indian Air Force (IAF) is to conduct field trials of the Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft before selecting the final bidder for the country’s medium multirole combat aircraft (MMRCA) programme.

Eurofighter delivered the first Typhoon aircraft for the flight test to Bangalore on 18 February 2010.

The IAF will begin the four-month flight testing of the six Typhoon aircraft on 22 February, at Bangalore, Jaisalmer and Leh, according to ANI.

Jaisalmer and Leh will be part of the Eurofighter’s desert and high-altitude performance tests.

Eurofighter Typhoon head Stefan Billep said the fighter offered a broad spectrum of operational advantages to India, such as its adaptability to operate in severe weather conditions, high mission effectiveness and survivability in threat situations.

Eurofighter’s other contenders for the MMRCA contract is Dassault’s Rafale, Saab’s JAS 39 Super Gripen IN, Boeing’s F/A-18E/F-IN Super Hornet, Lockheed Martin’s F-16IL and Russia’s MiG-35.

The IAF’s MMRCA contract, worth €7.6bn ($10.4bn), includes order for 126 jets, helicopters, air lifters and other defence equipment to upgrade its weaponry.