August 21, 2013 / 7:40 PM / 6 years ago

F-35 operating cost drops below $1 trillion -source

Aug 21 (Reuters) - The U.S. government now estimates it will cost $857 billion to operate and maintain a fleet of more than 2,000 Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets over 55 years, a drop of more than 20 percent from the previous estimate of more than $1 trillion, according to a senior defense official.

The new estimate reflects actual data about the airplane’s performance and revised assumptions about how it will be used in combat.

The new estimate was first reported by Bloomberg on Wednesday. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the costliest weapons program in U.S. history.

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