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Germany is gearing up to showcase its A-400M military transport aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF) at the upcoming multinational air exercise Tarang Shakti in August 2024. This exercise presents a strategic opportunity for Germany, as the A-400M is a strong contender for an IAF tender for Medium Transport Aircraft (MTA).

Sources close to the development have revealed that the IAF, having already reviewed the A-400M in Europe, is particularly impressed with its cargo-carrying capacity – the largest among its competitors in the race. With a maximum payload of up to 37 tonnes, the A-400M outshines the C-130J and C-390M, both vying for the same IAF contract.

The Tarang Shakti exercise serves as a valuable platform for Germany to demonstrate the A-400M’s capabilities to the IAF firsthand. The exercise will involve participation from various countries, allowing the IAF to witness the A-400M in action alongside other contenders. This could include aspects like:

Short-field takeoff and landing capabilities: A key advantage of the A-400M is its ability to operate from rough and short airstrips, a critical factor for the IAF’s diverse operational need’s

Strategic airlift potential: The A-400M’s impressive payload capacity can be showcased by simulating the transport of heavy military equipment or large numbers of troops.

Tactical deployment: The exercise can demonstrate the A-400M’s ability to perform tactical airdrops and rapid troop deployments.

Airbus is yet to announce who it will be its Indian partner for the program while Tata Aerospace that will be manufacturing Airbus developed C-235 Transport aircraft in Gujrat, seems to be frontrunner again, but has been told that even Adani Defence is interested in the program.

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