Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content


The Smart Fighter

Quick Launch

Gripen > Categories


​Last month, Czech Gripen fighters participated at AirPower, one of the largest airshows in Europe. Here is a video of Gripen’s solo display at the airshow.

This year, AirPower attracted 300,000 visitors. About 240 aircraft from 20 countries participated. The airshow took place on September 2 and 3.

​Two squadrons of Swedish Air Force Gripen fighters were at RAF Leeming last week to participate in the UK's bi-annual exercise, The Joint Warrior.

According to Swedish Air Force pilot Lieutenant Colonel Jörgen Axelsson, the airspace in Britain is quite different and so the exercises were challenging and hence were very good from a training perspective.

“It’s especially good for our younger pilots, as many of them have not been abroad before flying in international airspace, so they are learning a lot from each sortie they fly,” he says.

Read the full story here.

​While on a visit to South Africa, Defence Minister of Sweden, Peter Hultqvist met his South African counterpart Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula at Pretoria, reports SABC News.

South Africa is Gripen's first export customer. It was also the first nation to order HMD (Helmet Mounted Display) for its Gripen fleet (17 Gripen Cs and nine Gripen Ds).

"I am sure you are aware of the fact that we have procured one of the strategic defence packages from Sweden. Our fighter aircrafts are from there and we are proud to say that South Africa is the only country in the African continent which has such capability," Mapisa-Nqakula said.

Hultqvist emphasized that selling or leasing aircraft to other countries is more than business. "This is one of Swedish national security interest: when we sell or lease aircrafts to other countries, it's something more than a business - it’s about security and a long term relationship," he said.

Read the full story here.

At the recently concluded ADAS 2016, in Manila, Philippines, Gripen campaign director Magnus Hagman spoke about how Gripen is a very strong contender for the Philippine Multi-Role Fighter programme.

“We see Gripen as one of the most important assets for an air force, a true multi-role fighter that can work in a real network centric environment, sharing data with various other aircraft and also incorporating that into a C4I system,” Hagman said.

For an archipelagic country like Philippines that has more than 7,000 islands, Gripen, with its STOL (short take-off and landing) capabilities, would be an ideal solution, he added.

Recently, Saab also announced that it will open an office in Manila by end of the year to support its Gripen campaign in the country. Talking to IHS Jane’s​, Carl-Eric Leek, who will head this office, said that Saab’s offer would include a package of support systems, similar to what was delivered to the Royal Thai Air Force (12 Gripen C/D aircraft).

Swedish Air Force Gripen participated in the Finnish exercise Baana 2016 and practiced the art of landing and taking off from a road base.

As a part of the exercise, both Finish and Swedish fighters carried out many "touch and go" exercises. 

Gripen has been designed on the Cold War philosophy which means it has the unique ability to land and take off on short, actual roads and not just on regular runways. Gripen can take off and land in less than 500 meters.

Five Czech Air Force Gripen fighters have been deployed for the NATO Air Policing mission of guarding the airspace of Iceland. These Gripen fighters will be stationed at the Naval Air Station in Keflavik from 29 September to 10 November. 

This is the fifth deployment of Czech Gripen fighter jets for a NATO air mission. Previously, Czech Air Force has sent its Gripen fighters to guard the airspace over Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in 2009 and 2012. In 2014 and 2015, the Czech Gripen fighters were deployed for Allied missions in Iceland.

More news on the Czech Gripen's Icelandic Air Policing will follow. Until then, have a look at what the Czech Air Force has to say about Gripen.

Know more about the mission here​.​​​​​

Photo: Jörgen Nilsson​

The largest and the most popular air-defence technology event in the Czech Republic and Central Europe, ‘NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days’ was held on September 17 and 18, 2016, at Ostrava Leos Janacek Airport. A Czech Gripen fighter performed a spellbinding aerial display for visitors at the airshow. 

It was a treat for the eyes, with a variety of air and land technology shows displaying the extent of global defence technologies in a recreational manner. Perhaps the most attractive part of the programme belonged to the flying displays, with highlights such as Gripen’s elegant maneuvers – which included a quick take-off, rising to an immense height before falling into a dive and then somersaulting and spinning back close to the ground before rising back up and giving a display of its quick grace. Aerial displays such as the famed RAF Falcons’ choreographed descent from the skies and other enchanting flying displays also awed the large audience.

‘NATO Days in Ostrava’ has gained popularity among aviation enthusiasts all over the world due to its eye-catching exhibitions, flying displays, existing and latest aircraft displays, in-flight refueling exercises and a wide range of air and land defence equipment display used by NATO member countries. 

​During the recent celebrations marking the 90th anniversary of the Swedish Air Force, Defense & Aerospace Report​ took the opportunity to speak to Ulf Nilsson, Senior Vice President and Head of Aeronautics, Saab, on the philosophy that drives the making and development of Gripen E and what makes the approach fundamentally different.

Future technology is, of course, hard to predict even three to four years down the line. Looking back 10-15 years, the pace of technology development could be predicted, but not so with the coming of the digital revolution. “Earlier, the pace of development of technology was setting the pace of development of capabilities of the fighter system. Not anymore though. This is a big change and the development platform has to be able to cope with this kind of a change,” says Nilsson. 

Keeping that in mind, Gripen E is created to be relevant even if the technology of today becomes obsolete tomorrow. That is one of the best features of the new Gripen: its flexibility, preserved in a balanced design, makes it extremely adaptable. 

Built upon the strong base of proven C/D platform, Gripen E redefines air-defence systems with its exciting new capabilities and significant cost reduction. Not only does Gripen E have what it takes to fly safely, when it comes to tactical and functional developments, it has more of an ‘app-based development’ approach, which makes it easier to upgrade the aircraft from time to time. “This is one of the major leaps forward when ...

The upgrade known in Swedish term as MS20 involves a whole series of improvements and new functionality, both in terms of the aircraft itself and the ancillary support and training systems.​ Saab knows that its customers need a reliable, affordable and available fighter, against all threats, today and tomorrow. And that is why it makes Gripen. 

Gripen fighters have been very active at recent airshows around Europe. At the annual Czech International Air Fest (CIAF), the Czech Air Force preformed a stunning display with one of its Gripen fighters.

CIAF, the largest airshow in the Czech Republic, was held on the 3rd and 4th of September at the Hradec Kralove airport.​ More than 25 aircraft from 10 countries participated in the airshow.​

1 - 10 >
Welcome to the official Gripen blog by Saab. This site features information and commentary about the Gripen fighter jet.