New Zealand Minister of Defense Ron Mark has announced that country’s Air Force plans to replace the current C130-H Hercules fleet with five C-130J-30 Super Hercules transport aircraft.
Defense Minister Ron Mark confirmed the purchase of the C-130J-30 Super Hercules transport aircraft on 5 June at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Whenuapai.
“Generations of New Zealanders have grown up and grown old with the Hercules, and they know these aircraft are an essential first line of response,” Mark said.
According to the NZ Herald, as part of $1.521 billion project, the New Zealand Air Force will receive the first of five C-130J-30 transport aircraft in 2024 and the Super Hercules fleet to be operational in 2025.
The project also includes a full mission simulator and other supporting infrastructure.
The C-130J-30 Super Hercules incorporates state-of-the-art technology to reduce manpower requirements, lower operation and support costs, thus providing life-cycle cost savings over earlier C-130 models.
The J-model airframe offers a longer fuselage with additional pallet positions for added airlift capacity, an updated cockpit with digital avionics, more efficient engines and propellers, which increase range and speed and many other improvements.