Boeing’s New 2040C Eagle Commercial is Incredibly Badass!

The US Air Force is currently saddled with a quandary plaguing its air superiority capabilities. With fighter platforms aging rapidly without suitable replacements available, and with foreign nations quickly closing the technology gap which was once the biggest advantage the United States possessed over other countries (at least militarily-so), the USAF needs a fix, fast. Congress has even gone as far as to order the Air Force to explore the possibility of restarting the production line for the F-22, which ended in 2012 with only 187 units produced overall, a mere fraction of what the Air Force originally intended to buy to replace their F-15 Eagles en masse. Boeing says that it has a cheaper and more effective solution, in the form of a major fleet-wide overhaul of all combat coded F-15Cs.

This upgrade, called 2040C or Advanced F-15, will incorporate technology from Boeing’s older Silent Eagle program, along with a few new gadgets, in order to give the USAF’s F-15Cs a brand new lease on life, turning it into an even deadlier air-to-air fighter than ever before. To help market their product, Boeing just released this awesome video of Eagles with 2040C upgrades.

According to Flight Global, the 2040C upgrade features “quad packs” which fit onto standard under-wing and belly hardpoints (the F-15C has 11 combined), effectively doubling the Eagle’s current air-to-air loadout to 16 missiles. That’s also double the F-22 Raptor’s internal air-to-air loadout. Additionally, conformal fuel tanks (CFTs) similar to the FAST Packs used on F-15E Strike Eagles will help increase the 2040C Eagle’s range without tanking up pylon space for larger drop tanks, which are typically slung in pairs underneath the wings of the aircraft, or on its centerline pylon station (underneath the fuselage).

payload advance eagle

A screen grab from the commercial, with the 2040C’s proposed weapon stations upgrades.

2040C will also equip the F-15C with the Talon HATE communications pod, allowing it to transfer and receive data to and from F-22s operating alongside Eagles in combat theaters on a secured high-speed link. Previously, the F-22 was unable to communicate in such a way with USAF F-15s and F-16 Fighting Falcons, precluding them from participating in combat ops over Libya. Boeing, in conjunction with BAE Systems, has already been contracted to the tune of $4 billion USD to replace the Eagle’s AN/ALQ-135 Tactical Electronic Warfare Suite with the Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS).

As part of the plan, all Eagles will receive Raytheon’s AN/APG-63(V)3 active synthetically scanned array (AESA) radar, which Boeing has already been contracted to install on Air Force Eagles since 2007. As part of the sensors upgrade, a long-range infrared search and track (IRST) system will also be included, allowing the 2040C Eagle a “first sight, first shot, first kill” capability against enemy fighter aircraft. A cockpit overhaul also comes along with the 2040C upgrade. Multifunction displays (MFDs) and gauges will be replaced entirely by a large area display (LAD) similar to the ones used on F-35 Lightning IIs.

F-15 Advance Cockpit Commercial

The cockpit of the 2040C Eagle, featuring the large area display and what might possibly be a reworked heads up display (HUD)

Thus far, the Air Force hasn’t made a definite statement on whether or not they’ll pursue the upgrade, though considering that restarting production on the Raptor, or buying brand new F-15s and F-16s will likely ring up a sky-high bill, the 2040C option seems like a fairly decent option to explore.

About Ian D'Costa (240 Articles)
Ian is the editor-in-chief of the Tactical Air Network. His work has been republished and quoted in a number of publications, including The Toronto Star, Airsoc, Business Insider and The Aviationist. You can reach him at

10 Comments on Boeing’s New 2040C Eagle Commercial is Incredibly Badass!

  1. Jeffrey Peter // May 23, 2016 at 22:23 // Reply


    Liked by 1 person

  2. mach 3 (see F-4) and canards


  3. Roland Delhomme // May 24, 2016 at 22:58 // Reply

    So, so much more could be done with a true Advanced Eagle development program; this is a.nice marketing mashup, but more lethal Eagle variants have been possible-some flown, and should be considered along with what this has to offer.


  4. It’s true that “speed is life” in a dogfight and Mach 3 sounds impressive, but it’s not tactically practical with missiles and other stores hanging out on the wing stations. It is that raw power coupled with incredible weapons systems that makes the Mach 2.5 Eagle so impressive. The brainiacs in the Pentagon should consider a mix of F-22s and F-15s and/or F-16s — all loaded to the gunnels with missiles — to work together as Air Sovereignty platforms. A single F-22 can probably detect and track targets almost as well as an AWACS while also serving as the battle commander of an element of four to eight F-15s and/or F-16s. Utilizing a secured high-speed date link system, the Raptor could detect targets, sort. and assign them to the other aircraft in the element, all without making one radio transmission. It would be good utilization of assets
    already ramp ready around the world.


  5. Another Guest // July 20, 2016 at 06:09 // Reply

    “buying brand new F-15s and F-16s will likely ring up a sky-high bill”.

    Well, not really. At $100M (est) per plane, the F-15 may seem expensive but when all costs vs performance are reviewed, X vs Y vs Z are not the same.

    Few aircraft have the range, performance, weapons payload and now modern electronics packages/cockpit plus digital flight control. F-15’s are tough airplanes. The latest versions of the assembly line could be rated for as much as 32,000 flight hours. Many fighters like the F-16/18/Gripen are more of a light fighter designed for throw away after 8-10,000 hours.

    The latest F-15 variant is an evolutionary upgrade just as the Su-35S is to the original Su-27.


  6. The text says, “F-15C’s,” but it shows two-seaters in the video ad.


  7. All I have to say is YF -23


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