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Why was the TSR 2 scrapped?
Evidence suggests that were 20+ years ahead of the Americans and Russians with this aircraft,
which was 80% through it's development stage.
This plane was better than the F111 and on only one Olympus engine could outpace our main fighter at the time "English Electric Lightning" at full throttle!

So Why was the TSR 2 scrapped?

We had no real replacement for the Canberra until the Panavia Tornado came along.
asked in aircraft, history



w.j.flywheel answers:

Spiralling costs and poor management seem to be the real reason. There is no doubt the aircraft was well ahead of it's time but the RAF were already said to be interested in the F111 project and the new Labour Government didn't help.

This comes from BA:

"The TSR.2 programme was, however, now under serious and concerted attack; poor management and inter-company cooperation were causing spiralling costs and rumours abounded of impending cancellation. In early 1965 the national newspapers reported that an RAF team was in the USA to consider purchasing the TFX (F-111) instead of continuing the TSR.2 programme. Urgent discussions between BAC and the new Labour government ensued, and there was even a protest march in London where 10,000 BAC employees called for the keeping of the TSR.2. The government issued such strong denials of cancellation that The Times quipped that they had 'stuck fear into the heart' of the industry. XR220, the second prototype, was undergoing inspection and repair after being damaged on delivery to Boscombe Down, and was ready to fly for the beginning of April. That the aircraft was incredibly advanced was not in question; and the problems besetting development were being solved one by one. But it would all be to no avail.


The second prototype would never fly; the government, in the Budget Day announcement on the 6th of April 1965, announced that the TSR.2 programme was to be terminated immediately."


Supplement from 05/08/2007 06:36am:

Supplement from 05/08/2007 06:37am:

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Aiming4777 answers:

It was almost certainly political. There were claims that you could buy 10 F111s for the cost of one TRS-2. It may have been believed at the time but, of course, the F111 was years late and 10 times the original quoted costs.

Mountbatten was rumoured to have advised the Australians NOT to buy the TSR-2 and they, of course, bought the F111 too.

After the labour Government came to power they wasted no time at all in dropping the project. There were rumours at the time that the Americans made the purchase of the F111 a condition of signing new trade agreements with the UK. ON the other hand, the Government also tried to cancel the Concord development (another one where we were way ahead of everyone else). Only the efforts of Tony Benn that kept that project alive. So maybe the Government were just risk adverse.


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