The Spanish Air Force is pursuing the purchase of 16 more PC-21s in its third round of procurement with Pilatus after previously ordering in 2020 and 2022. The Spanish Air Forces’ Pilatus PC-21 training aircraft will be delivered to various locations to train the Spanish fighter pilots. 

A total of 14 PC21s will be delivered to the Academia General del Aire (AGA) in San Javier. The package also includes a PC-21 simulator, two cockpit procedure trainers, additional mission planning and debriefing systems, and pilot training software. 

Two additional PC-21s will be delivered to the Centro Logistico de Armamento y Experimentacion (CLAEX) for experimental, training, and R&D activities.

Designed and developed specifically for student pilots, the Pilatus PC-21 training aircraft offers a cost-effective and highly efficient training solution for air forces.

The second batch of 16 trainers PC-21 from Pilatus Aircraft for the Spanish Ministry of Defence cost €240m euros. The future fighter pilot training started in the summer of 2022. 

This contract makes Spain the largest PC-21 operator in Europe. According to a GlobalData report, Switzerland takes up 11.4% of Spain’s defence imports, even though its military hardware can’t be re-exported.  

Source: GlobalData Intelligence

According to GlobalData’s “Swiss Defense Market Data 2022-2027”, nations including France, Spain, Ireland, Thailand, Jordan, and Australia have all procured several units over the last few years.

Lieutenant Colonel Ildefonso Martínez-Pardo González, AGA air operations group commander, commented: “Now in use with the Spanish Air and Space Force for over 18 months, the PC-21 integrated training system far exceeds our expectations.

“It’s reliable and efficient powerplant, aerodynamics, safety systems and avionics make the PC-21 a highly versatile trainer, capable of performing any phase of flight training from the most elementary to the most advanced.”

In 2018, the French Air Force delivered two Pilatus PC-21 training aircraft to its Cognac Chateaubernard Air Base.