Final Fort Worth-Built F-16 Completed

Newly completed Iraqi Air Force F-16C Block 52 1636 (RA-28, USAF/13-0031) in a hangar at Fort Worth last month. This was the last F-16 to be built there, with future production scheduled to move to Greenville, South Carolina. USAF

LOCKHEED MARTIN has completed manufacture of the last F-16 Fighting Falcon to be built at US Air Force Plant No 4 in Fort Worth, Texas.  The aircraft, F-16C Block 52 1636 (RA-28, USAF/13-0031), is the last of 36 on order for the Iraqi Air Force and was completed in mid-September, but has yet to be delivered.

The company had announced on March 22 that it would shut-down F-16 production at Fort Worth by the end of this year.  Future manufacturing of the type will be undertaken on a new production line that will be set up at the company’s facility in Greenville, South Carolina.  The reason for the move is to free up more space at Fort Worth to enable expansion of the F-35 Lightning II production line.

This ends over four decades of F-16 manufacturing at Fort Worth, where the first F-16 prototype, 72-1567, rolled out on December 13, 1973.  A total of 3,640 F-16s were built at the Plant before production ceased.  At its height, production reach a peak in 1987, when no less than 286 airframes were produced.  It will take a couple of years to set up the new line in Greenville, where the first aircraft are expected to be built from around late 2019 or early 2020.