With arms export ban loosened, Tokyo is shopping an indigenous sub-hunting plane for the first time at an American arms show
(From Defense One)
By Marcus Weisgerber
It looks like a Japanese Shinkansen bullet train with wings. Two round bubbles and sharp antennas jut from its spine and underbelly. But this is no 737 people mover. It’s Kawasaki’s new P-1 submarine-hunting airplane, the first of its kind Japan has shown to foreign buyers after loosening World War II-era arms exports restrictions. And it’s a doozy.
Kawasaki reps are in the U.S. this week, showing off a small model of the plane at the Navy League’s annual Sea-Air-Space conference, a mass gathering of American and foreign naval officials. Company officials have hooked the sound of its roaring engines into a small Bose speaker strapped to the model’s base, drawing the attention of passers by.
The display inside a massive conference center just outside the Washington Beltway marks the first time Kawasaki has showcased the plane at an American trade show, a company rep said. Japan modified its constitution in 2014, allowing Tokyo to export arms for the first time since World War II. Kawasaki pitched the P-1 at an arms show in Japan last summer. Read more