Aircraft Comparison By

Eurofighter Typhoon vs Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II

During the Cold War, European nations sought out a means of checking the Soviet Union’s ever-present threat of war. Meanwhile, across the Pacific, the US looked to replace its aging fleet of aircraft with a multi-role aircraft. They found their answers in the Eurofighter and F-35 respectively.

Aircraft: Eurofighter Typhoon T1 Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II
Photo:
Eurofighter Typhoon RIAT 2016
F 35A Lightning II
Country: Germany United States
Manufactured: from: 2003 to: Present from: 2011 to: Present
ICAO: - F35
Price: $90 million $115.5 million
Avionics: BAE Systems Tranche 2 avionics JSF Cooperative Avionics
Engine: 2x Eurojet EJ200 afterburning turbofan 1x Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100
Engine Type: Turbofan Turbofan
Power: 13,500 pound-force 43,000 pound-force
Max Cruise Speed: 1147 knots
2,124 Km/h
1043 knots
1,932 Km/h
Approach Speed (Vref): - 250 knots
Travel Range: 2,047 Nautical Miles
3,791 Kilometers
1,500 Nautical Miles
2,778 Kilometers
Fuel Economy: - 0.94 nautical mile / gallon
0.460 kilometres / litre
Service Ceiling: 65,000 feet 65,000 feet
Rate of Climb: 62600 feet / minute
318.01metre / second
40000 feet / minute
203.20metre / second
Take Off Distance: 91 metre
298.55 feet
168 metre
551.17 feet
Landing Distance: 213 metre
698.81 feet
213 metre
698.81 feet
Max Take Off Weight: 23,500 Kg
51,808 lbs
31,751 Kg
69,998 lbs
Max Landing Weight: - -
Max Payload: 6,486 Kg
14,299 lbs
8,160 Kg
17,990 lbs
Fuel Tank Capacity: 1,642 gallon
6,216 litre
2,760 gallon
10,448 litre
Baggage Volume: - -
Seats - Economy: 2 seats 1 seats
Seats - Business Class: - -
Seats - First Class: - -
Cabin Height: - -
Cabin Width: - -
Cabin Length: - -
Exterior Length: 4.71 metre
15.45 feet
15.7 metre
51.51 feet
Tail Height: - 4.48 metre - 14.70 feet
Fuselage Diameter: - -
Wing Span / Rotor Diameter: 5.28 metre
17.32 feet
10.7 metre
35.10 feet
Wing Tips: No Winglets No Winglets
More Info: Eurofighter Typhoon T1 Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II
Data presented is for entertainment purposes and should not be used operationally.

Other Eurofighter Typhoon T1 comparisons:

Other Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II comparisons:

We have more variants of each aircraft in our database. On the compare aircraft page you can compare any two aircraft yourself.

The Eurofighter Typhoon

In the theater of war, each party strives to have the upper hand over their enemies and this has held for centuries. During the 1980s, faced by an increasingly sophisticated armed neighbor, European nations came together and financed research and development of the Eurofighter to create the best European fighter jet.

Thanks to its beyond visual range capabilities, this delta-winged warplane possesses dog fight and surface attack capabilities. It has supercruise features, i.e., it can fly at speeds over Mach one without engaging the afterburner.

Currently, the plane serves as NATO’s European air defense backbone. Additionally, it helps provide cover to the South Atlantic, United Kingdom, and the Middle East.

The F-35 Lightning II

As a 5th generation fighter, this multi-role aircraft combines advanced stealth technology with speed and agility to ensure US dominance in air and land operations. The F-35 Lighting II is meant to replace most US fighters (A-10, F-16, F/A-18, and AV-8B) across all the military branches.

The jet features electronic warfare as well as reconnaissance, surveillance, and intelligence capabilities. Maintaining air superiority is essential in the preservation of global security. The F-35 is designed to counter current and foreseeable threats to this stability.

Differences Between Typhoon and F-35

As impressive as both aircraft are, they are different in some ways. First, there is a slight difference in price between the two. 

Despite costing more than the F-35, the Eurofighter is affordable to fly and maintain. However, the Eurofighter is more nimble and agile compared to its competitor. Despite this, thanks to its advanced avionics and stealth capacity, the F-35 has the first look-first shoot-first kill advantage.

Similarities Between Typhoon and F-35

In terms of similarities, other than being manned by a 1-man crew- the two are quite different. Indeed, both of these planes were conceived to fill various roles. Despite this, they are equally lethal.

What’s Better About The F-35

 Stealth

What is stealth? By no means am I referring to “star-wars” or “Avenger” kind of stealth- that’s years ahead. By employing a mix of design, technology, and tactics, the F-35 can elude or mix enemy capabilities of locating and destroying the craft.

Through basic designs such as having an internal fuel and weapons bay, embedded mission sensors, external shape, etc., the lightning II can achieve unprecedented stealth permeance.

Weapon Capacity

At 29,002 lb. when empty and 70,107 lb. mission ready, the F-35 is more than capable of housing a wide range of bombs and missiles internally. Depending on the mission environment, there’s the option of carrying up to eight StormBreaker weapons externally on its wings.

The 6th Sense

Sensor fusion allows this stealth warcraft to scan heat signatures from other aircraft, analyze it then decide the threat level- all while being miles away. If the onboard computer determines there’s a threat, it communicates to other F-35’s nearby. Pilots and ground crews have heightened situational awareness. 

The jets never hunt alone, always as a pack. In no scenario can an enemy manage to sneak on any single aircraft. This means fewer jets are needed to cover vast amounts of airspace.

Nuclear Armament

Currently, of the two, the F-35 is the only plane certified to carry US B61 nuclear bombs during a crisis as part of NATO’s nuclear strike. This gives it an edge over the Eurofighter (at least until the Pentagon certifies it).

What’s Better About the Eurofighter Typhoon

The Eurofighter delivers an enviable level of maneuverability and efficiency. The aircraft is designed with the possibility of future upgrades and capabilities in mind. It excels against the F-35 in these areas:

Speed

The jet features twin EJ200 power plants, each capable of producing a staggering 90Kn of thrust. This means that the typhoon can reach speeds up to twice that of sound, with a top speed of Mach 2. It can attain a speed of 1,100mph slightly under 3 minutes after take-off- you blink and miss it.

Maneuverability

Did you know that the plane is highly unstable and was intentionally designed that way? To some, this is a great disadvantage, but it makes the plane highly agile and maneuverable. 

Furthermore, this reduces drag while increasing lift at subsonic speeds, making the aircraft suitable for short take-offs and landing (ideal for aircraft carriers). At 64,993 ft, the Eurofighter enjoys a higher cruising ceiling and a broader range of 1,802 miles than the F-35’s 1,379 miles.

Lower Costs

Despite costing more per unit compared to the F-35 ($106 million/$94 million), the Eurofighter is way cheaper to operate and maintain in the long run. It also consumes lower amounts of fuel and is more dominant in any dog fight.

Conclusion

The F-35 program is marred in controversy. It’s the most expensive US defense project, expected to cost more than $1 trillion over its 60-year lifespan. Advocates for the project promise that it will be a game-changer, but that is yet to be seen.

The Eurofighter made its combat debut over Libyan deserts in 2011 with the UK’s Royal Air Force. It’s faster, cheaper to operate, carries an impressive payload, and can be upgraded to meet future battle needs. 

Nevertheless, the nature of air warfare is dynamic and currently, the future lies more on stealth than speed. Consequently, the F-35 is more suited to match and outperform the Eurofighter in such a scenario.

About the Author