While we talk plenty about America's two new fifth-generation fighter jets, the F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II, there's substantially less info on its potential adversary, Russia's Sukhoi PAK FA T-50.
Developed to counter the Americans, the PAK FA incorporates stealth technology, thrust vectoring, and supercruise (the ability to travel at supersonic speeds without the use of afterburners). That said, it's been a troubled program, not unlike its American counterparts, facing cost overruns and technical hurdles. The Russian Air Force has been forced to slash its initial order of 150 planes to just 12, due to the aircraft's high cost and the struggling Russian economy. That's also bad news for Sukhoi which, according to The Aviantionist, had planned to sell some 400 aircraft between Russia and co-developer India. The sub-continent's superpower has also trimmed its order, although nowhere near as dramatically as its partner.
While the program may be troubled, as evidenced by the video above, its abilities are absolutely dynamite. Maneuvers start off simple enough, but then the big plane's pilot turns things up to 11 and begins executing all sorts of wild and crazy thrust-vectoring maneuvers. There's the iconic and distinctly Russian Pugachev's Cobra, and then some wild flat spin maneuvers. In short, with dance moves like this, the T-50 should prove a handful if it ever ends up facing off against an F-22 or F-35.
Check out the video up top (and sorry about the Russian).