[Video] Cessna’s new, unlikely, low cost warplane’s taxi test

Let’s be honest: had it been the latest Iranian fighter jet we would have laughed at it. But it was designed by Cessna so we believe it has at least a few chances to succeed.

We are talking about Scorpion, the new tactical strike aircraft secretely developed by Cessna parent company Textron and unveiled to the public in September.

The aircraft aims to replace current, expensive warplanes in irregular warfare, border and maritime patrol, intelligence surveillance reconnaissance, counter-narcotics, air defense operations and any other task that could be fulfilled by a light aircraft capable to reach a maximum speed of about 450 kts and accomodate some precision guided munitions.

Its shape is at least weird but with a planned hourly cost of only 3,000 USD, the Scorpion could fill the gap between choppers and hi-tech, costly combat planes in homeland security missions and low lethality scenarios.

Provided the U.S. Air Force will venture on a new plane for missions that are being gradually transferred to UCAVs (Unmanned Combat Air Vehicles).

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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. The least they could of done to this airframe is too make it look
    stealthy, I don’t mean actually need to be stealthy, just looked it, so
    you can market the “American Stealth” to the wannabe 3rd world

    This way you can distinguish yourself from the Yak-130,
    the M-346, the KAI T-50, and the ultimate low cost alternative: Guizhou JL-9, and
    the Hongdu L-15, which is prob around $15M and they all can be
    supersonic, and serve dual function as trainers.

    This product really, really need to standout in a crowed field, and you can’t beat the 沃尔玛 prices, Textron really needs a new marketing team.

      • You clearly missed his point. A lot of third world countries use their trainers as dual purpose aircraft. The L-39 and super tucano are excellent examples of this.

  2. Reason why it is not mocked.

    1. It moved on the taxiway with its own power and not a tow truck with cables strapped on it.

    2. It is big enough for the pilot and provide safety to him, especially because his knee will not be visible :P

    3. It doesn’t claim to be anything else than what it says, a simple plane, low cost, for simple workloads.

    4. Its looks , if looking at certain angles, seems to be the love child between a Tomcat and Dragonfly with probably some sneaky Freeeedduuuummm Fighter genes in there. Lots of giggitys were done to make this one :P

  3. Definite market for it in Central America, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras would probably be extremely interested. These scorpions will without a doubt be cheaper then all the modern trainers available. They are probably priced close to what the super toucans are.

  4. I’m willing to bet there are politicians and Lockheed suits trying to argue this plane is not needed, the JSF can fulfill this very mission.

    i am so in love with the Rutan 151 though!

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