A F-5 Tiger ready for flight
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Why A 1960s Navy Fighter Jet Is Still In Service Today
The F-5 Tiger was intended to be a fighter jet mass-produced for taking down adversarial planes like the Soviet MiG, and over time, it became overwhelmingly popular.
The acrobatic, easy-to-fly, and fast F-5 Tiger was cheap to manufacture and performed all manner of duties during the Vietnam era. However, its real legacy is that of a trainer jet.
It’s perfectly suited to allow new pilots to acclimate to a supersonic jet, but the F-5 shines as an adversarial fighter during training in place of a MiG or the Chinese Chengdu fighter jet.
Nearly six decades after its debut, the F-5 is still used as an adversarial training fighter because the jet is reliable and relatively simple to maintain and operate.