As far as I know, Mistral contract is the compensation for France. After Soyuz had defeated Ariane in the Gallieo project, Russia agreed to buy French Mistral so that France can still gain some money after the defeat of Ariane.
Not the way things work... or what did Russia get when the Rafale won the Indian MMRCA competition?
Russia also want some information in the design of Mistral. But some people commented that Mistral belongs to the class of "2nd-rate ferry of Manche", not "1st-rate ferry of Baltics", therefore the techs in Mistral are not something very special.
It was a mature tested design that could be put into production rapidly and they could get into service within a couple of years of signing the contract. Any new design would need competition and comprehensive testing which would take a decade.
That is the reason why these Russian Mistrals have much higher price than the original Mistrals. Actually, many Russian people had protested against the Mistral contract.
the higher price was because they are basically handing over the entire technology for the vessel... the third and fourth vessel... if ordered would be built in Russia and licence production is never cheaper than having the maker make them for you.
I was wondering what posters opinions are if the Mistrals are not delivered.
I know that the USSR had the Kherson design in the 1980's, but obviously things have moved on since then.
In the event of the Mistrals not being delivered, is there a Russian design out there that would be considered?
I'm assuming that various shipyards must have had designs that perhaps competed or were put forward originally before the Mistral was selected?
As mentioned these vessels are just helicopter barges... nothing too complicated or special, but obviously the last few years the Mistral deal has been signed so progress on any domestic equivalent would be unlikely.
With the design and construction plans they could easily build more Mistrals, but I suspect part of the ToT would require royalty fees be paid for Russian production vessels.
I rather suspect if the Mistral deal falls through they will start a domestic program to design and build replacements but such vessels would not be ready till at least 2020.
I think the Mistral would be rather useful in the arctic and near the Kurile isles... without them I suspect they might perhaps change the force structure in the north and far east to compensate with more ground based helos till new carriers are ready.