IAF will get an LCA Trainer by 2023, while an LCA LIFT Flying Testbed is scheduled for 2025

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited has already begun producing LCA Tejas Trainer aircraft in FOC mode; the first batch of 4 aircraft will be delivered this year, and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited aims to finish delivering 14 additional aircraft by the end of 2023. IAF had ordered 4 LCA Trainers in IOC configuration and 14 Trainers in FOC configuration in three batches, but all 18 will be in the chosen final configuration.

The launch of LCA LIFT, which will be utilised for demonstration and trials to suit the requirements of the Indian Air Force, Royal Australian Air Force, Egyptian Air Force, and even Malaysia, may occur sometime in late 2025. LCA LIFT will be based on the LCA Trainer aircraft.

In order to satisfy Malaysia’s requirements for its tender for 18 light combat jets, 10 Tejas Mk1A and 8 LCA trainer aircraft have been offered. According to Malaysian media reports, the tender winner is anticipated to be announced by the end of August, and the contract may be signed in the middle of 2023. The first batch of LCA Trainer will be delivered by HAL starting in 2026, while ten Tejas Mk1A will be delivered by 2028. HAL claims to be the front-runner in the Malaysian tender.

If the Malaysian order is finished before the end of the year, plans have been made to switch some of the IAF orders to the HAL plant in Nasik. The last two LCA Trainer that the IAF had bought to serve as a flying test bed for the LCA LIFT programme may be put on hold by the IAF and HAL. LCA Trainer and LCA LIFT will have various enhancements because they will be used to provide advanced instruction to new pilots, whilst LCA Trainer will be similar to the single seater form.

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