The debut of the PLA’s J-20 stealth fighter at the Zhuhai Air Show has attracted attention from Taiwan, among others. Feng Shih-kuan, head of Taiwan’s local defense authority, said he is confident that Taiwan’s F-16v fighter can rival the J-20.
“Compared with the J-20, do we have confidence in our upgraded F-16s,” said Taiwan’s defence minister.
Taiwan plans to buy F-16V fighters from the United States to upgrade its existing F-16 fleet by 2022.
In a program aired on CCTV on Nov. 4, senior colonel Fang Bing, a professor at NationalDefense University, said Feng’s remarks “are a joke.”
“Any improvement of the F-16 fighter is at most a 3.5-generation fighter, while the J-20 isa typical fourth-generation fighter. By American and Russian standards, it is a fifth-generation fighter, so there is a huge gap between them,” Fang said, adding that in a duelwith the J-20, the F-16v would have no chance.
According to Fang, the debut of the J-20 makes it the third type of fourth-generationfighter to enter active service, following the American F-22 and F-35.