The USAF’s effort to replace its 45+ year old KC-135 fleet with 179 new tankers under the KC-X program has suffered another blow with confirmation a decision has been delayed from November 2010 until “early” 2011.
It has also been revealed that USAF officials accidentally sent each of the two rival bidders, Boeing with its KC-767AT and EADS with its A330 MRTT based KC-45, details about each others’ bids including sensitive pricing information.
The RFT documents released to the bidders had originally stated November 12 would be the date the decision would be announced, and this was later amended to December 20. The latest delays follows two previous efforts; in 2004 which was cancelled due to impropriety by Boeing and USAF officials, and in 2008 when a decision was overturned on appeal.
The latest delay will supposedly allow the USAF to ensure both companies get equal access to the same information which was inadvertently sent out, thus ensuring there are no further grounds for appeal.