Boeing Gets $3.9B Contract for New Air Force One Jets

Boeing Gets $3.9B Contract for New Air Force One Jets

President Donald Trump says Air Force One is getting a patriotic makeover.

In an interview with CBS News, Trump said that two new replacements of the presidential jet due to be unveiled in several years will be painted red, white and blue, in a departure from the plane's current light-blue colour scheme.

Boeing is building the next generation of the 747 used to fly presidents around the world and Trump is using the opportunity to paint the plane in the colors of the American flag.

The baby blue colors are from a redesign by industrial designer Raymond Loewy for President John F. Kennedy in 1962.

Trump's dealings with Boeing over new Air Force One airplanes has been a public affair.

The new models would not likely be complete until 2021 at the earliest.

Trump had criticized Boeing during the 2016 campaign for the high costs of ordering new aircraft to serve as presidential planes. "And it's gonna be red, white and blue, which I think is appropriate", Trump told CBS.

'Red, white and blue, ' he said. "And we were able to take that", CBS quoted Trump as saying. That followed years of negotiations between Boeing and the U.S. Air Force - and Mr. Trump's personal intervention since his election.

The military version of the 747, which the Air Force designates the VC-25, is dubbed Air Force One whenever the commander-in-chief is aboard. They're expected to be delivered by December 2024, what would be the last full year of Trump's presidency should he win a second term, Reuters reports.

The program, managed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, is led by a two-star general and has about 100 employees in the Presidential Airlift Recapitalization Directorate at the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center headquarters.

In Tuesday's interview, the president stressed that the new planes will "be largely for future presidents", citing the "very complex project". "But by the time it gets built, you're going to have many presidents, hopefully, use it and enjoy it".

The White House has previously claimed that Trump's tough talk with Boeing on the cost of the planes had saved taxpayers more than $1.4 billion.