"We are aware of the media reports regarding the split of the Low Rate Initial Production 9 and 10 contracts, but as a matter of policy we do not comment on specifics concerning active contract negotiations," Rein stated. "We continue to negotiate with the US government on both contracts to reach a fair and equitable agreement for both parties."
The Defense Department has been negotiating with Lockheed Martin for 150 US Air Force F-35A jets in the hope that ordering in bulk might reduce the price to $80 million per aircraft by 2020.
The 150 aircraft represent the combination of Batches 9 and 10. Batch 9 consists of an estimated 63 aircraft that could conceivably be turned over to another designated lead.