In 1991 the US Navy Advanced Tactical Aircraft (ATA) program and the associated subsonic McDonnell Douglas/General Dynamics A-12 Avenger II two-seat stealth attack aircraft was cancelled. The program was plagued by delays and huge cost overruns. The design was simply way too ahead of its time!
Unfortunately the “Flying Dorito” never took flight and all that remains is the original mock-up aircraft that until very recently, sat in a bit of a sad state at the back of the Fort Worth Aviation Museum in Texas, without wings (they were laying nearby). At the start of 2020, the museum has put them back on the mock-up and now it looks more like the model aircraft you can see inside the museum! Although just a mock-up, the A-12 Avenger II looks the real deal!
I recently swung by Meacham Field Airport to take a look but it was pretty late in the day and I had to settle for a glimpse of the mock-up through the airport fence. When compared to my pictures from my visit to the museum in September 2019, you can really see the difference!
To read more about the cancelled ATA program, please take a look at my earlier post: What Might Have Been – The A-12 Avenger II.
2 thoughts on “The A-12 Avenger II “Flying Dorito” Has Wings Again!”
I worked on the A-12 when I was at Convair in San Diego. I’m glad to see that the mockup survived.
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Hopefully they can get it under cover some day.