This year’s Paris Air Show has seen the debuts of some amazing aircraft and technology, but it’s not the newest Boeing, Airbus, or Bombardier jet that has everyone turning their head.
It’s the roar of the Sukhoi SU-35, the augmented fourth generation of a Soviet-designed fighter jet that first flew in 1988 — which may just be the best fighter on the market.
To show off the incredible manoeuvring capabilities of the single-seat, twin-engine fighter, test pilot Sergei Bogdan — named a Hero of the Russian Federation in 2011 — has flown it every day at the air show. It’s an amazing display.
The SU-35 is built to change direction suddenly while maintaining control, meant for avoiding missiles. In Paris, Bogdan has been pulling off barrel rolls, flying upside down, and going into “falling leaf” mode — where the jet looks like it’s going to fall out of the air.
It’s incredibly loud, a ton of fun to watch, and after a week of demonstration flights, it hasn’t gotten old yet.
Watch it fly, and jump to the 1:00 mark for some crazy moves:
Here are a few photos from the show:
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