The McDonnell Douglas/General Dynamics A-12 Avenger II was an American experimental stealth aircraft design of the 1980s intended to replace the A-6 Intruder as a carrier-based bomber.
Design[edit | edit source]
The A-12 Avenger II was a proposed subsonic flying-wing ground-attack design by McDonnell Douglas, intended to be an all-weather naval stealth bomber. To avoid radar detection, the body of the Avenger II was smooth and featured an unusual trapezoidal shape. It would have carried greater armament than the F-117 Nighthawk, and would have had air-to-air capability as well.
Its first flight was planned for the end of 1990. Due to setbacks and the high cost of the A-12 program, the United States government canceled the project in 1991 before the aircraft could go into production. However, a full-size mockup Avenger II was built, and was later revealed to the public in June 1996.
In recent years, comparisons have been drawn between the capabilities of the now-cancelled A-12 and the role requirements of the United States Air Force's Next Generation Bomber currently under development.
Name[edit | edit source]
The name of the A-12 Avenger II was taken from the Grumman TBF Avenger torpedo bomber of World War II.