Unmanned Su-75 Checkmate with a new tail and wings design was shown

In this swiftly evolving age of technology, the importance of unmanned aircraft is escalating rapidly and revealing bright prospects for many nations. During the Army-2023 forum, held at the Kubinka airfield demonstration base, Russia unveiled for the first time a scale model of its latest creation – the Su-75 Checkmate fighter in an unmanned variation. 

Such a revelation sparked immense anticipation and curiosity among those eager to get the first glimpse of this unmanned fighter’s design. The unmanned Su-75 Checkmate, upon initial inspection, seems to be a striking variant. This assumption aligns with the wide array of weaponry already designed for this combat aircraft. 

Such an alternative heralds the possibility of revolutionizing military aviation, encompassing the advantages of high precision and maneuverability in unmanned operations. 

New tail and wings design

The inclusion of unmanned fighter jets forms an essential element of many nations’ strategic plans, and it appears Russia is keeping pace with this contemporary trend. This adaptation could significantly bolster air patrol and surveillance efficacy, thus promoting a more judicious use of weapons and resources.

One must consider that unmanned variants of fighter jets might deviate from their manned versions. As an illustration, the Su-75 Checkmate exhibits alterations to its wings and tail, possibly attributed to optimizations for automated operation. 

Implementation of a flat nozzle, akin to the S-70 Okhotnik’s, is also plausible. It might enhance the drone’s aerodynamic efficiency and maneuverability. 

Su-75 tests

Provocatively, test schedules for the Su-75 Checkmate’s manned version are set for the forthcoming year. In the face of a continuously evolving geopolitical landscape, the urgency for Russia’s defense industry to expedite this procedure is palpable. They aim to swiftly incorporate and deploy advanced technology in this accelerating arms rivalry. Here, even a single day could make a drastic difference. 

Unmanned Su-75 Checkmate with a new tail and wings design was shown
Photo credit: Reddit

An unmanned Su-75 Checkmate is not just another drone—it represents a pivotal development in Russia’s aviation history. This model presents novel military operation strategies and bolsters Russia’s modern aerial combat potential. 

Su-75 is economical

As we proceed, monitoring the project’s progression will certainly pique curiosity. There is a growing anticipation for further advancements. 

“Among fifth-generation single-engine aircraft and their earlier generation counterparts, only Checkmate’s main rival, the F-35, displays competitive performance. Indeed, the F-35 outshines the rest. However, the Checkmate model triumphs in the economy—a critical factor to remember. The expert highlighted that Checkmate’s operating cost per flight hour is just a seventh of the F-35’s —a significant advantage,” a Russian expert says, cited by Avia.pro.

TASS: Russia believes in Su-75, develops three new modifications
Photo credit: Rostec

Three variants

Development of the Sukhoi company’s new fighter aircraft is reportedly making strides. The United Aircraft Corporation [UAC], per information by TASS, is in the process of creating three versions of the Su-75 light tactical plane. These will include a single-seat, a double-seat, and an unmanned model. Furthermore, patent paperwork hints at planned enhancements to the initial design of the Su-75 Checkmate’s body structure.  

Interestingly, this revamped body structure appears to share similarities with a tentative design concept for Lockheed Martin’s 6th generation fighter – a part of the Next Generation Air Dominance [NGAD] initiative. Design alterations, including an enlarged secondary internal flaperon and a reformed tail section, intimate promise of enhanced aerodynamics, and sturdiness.  

TASS: Russia believes in Su-75, develops three new modifications
Photo credit: YouTube

The proposed changes extend to the fuselage sides, keels, keel bases, and air intake contour edges, all designed to lessen radar visibility. The duo-seater model exhibits an elongated cabin, while the unmanned version sticks to the single-seat model’s design. One noticeable difference in the unmanned Checkmate is that it lacks a cockpit, setting it apart from its single-seat variant. The maiden flight of the new generation Su-75 single-engine fighter, originally slated for 2023, has been deferred to 2025 by UAC. Plans are to get the mass production underway by 2027.  

One possible explanation for the postponement could be Sukhoi’s inexplicable shift to an open architecture idea, coupled with the addition of three fresh models. These reasonably require more design adjustments and updates to the patent files. Amid skepticism about the Su-75’s prospects, 19FortyFive suggests an advantage. The usage of equipment and parts from the Su-57 could expedite the ambitious timeline. However, the validity of Russia’s assertion of the Su-75’s comparable agility to the American F-35 Lightning II fighter still raises questions.

Nigeria is interested

The Su-75 Checkmate, Russia’s fifth-generation fighter jet manufactured by Sukhoi, has seemingly captivated the attention of Nigeria. This advanced craft burst onto the scene at the MAKS-2021 aerospace exhibition and has since been vigorously promoted to international markets by Russia. 

TASS: Russia believes in Su-75, develops three new modifications
Photo credit: Pinterest

A 2021 international advertising crusade featured actors portraying “pilots” from the countries within the campaign’s focus, including Nigeria. The confirmation of Nigeria’s interest in the aircraft came from Dmitry Shugaev, the director of Russia’s Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation. This confirmation occurred at the prestigious Russia-Africa forum. 

Shugaev disclosed that Nigeria showed enthusiasm for diverse types of Russian aviation equipment. He cautioned, however, that discussing specific contracts at this junction would be premature. Additionally, Shugaev revealed that Russia has partially executed a prior contract- a 2019 order of 12 Mi-35 combat helicopters placed by Nigeria.


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