The military found defects on the Su-34 bombers
Of course they are going to find defects, that is the purpose of testing, and no aircraft on the planet is without faults... even after years of being in service.
Officer-cum-operational service told the BBC, each incoming aircraft has their individual differences. In particular, one aircraft electric motors auxiliary units are located in one place, the other - in the other. In this Command of the Russian Air Force officer told the "News" that the last three Su-34 is different from the others for the better.
Well duh. As each batch of aircraft is built they will learn new and more efficient ways of building them, plus feed back from those they have already produced will be used to improve the design as well. Eventually they will be making planes the most efficient way, the way the Air Force wants them and they can take that as the production standard to produce new aircraft by and of course to upgrade older existing types to.
The Tu-160 is a case in point where no two aircraft were exactly the same as produced. The current upgrades to Tu-160M should unify all the systems and equipment so they are all the same to simplify maintainence and logistics.
By that time NATO will have who knows how many hundreds of F-35s in service and might possibly introduce a new model stealth strike aircraft
It really doesn't matter how many F-35s NATO has because in terms of performance the F-35 would probably have serious problems keeping up with an Su-34 let alone intercepting it. The Su-34 is a strike aircraft, the Russians don't need to have the same number of Su-34s as NATO has F-35s. They need as many Su-34s as they need to hit the targets they need to hit against enemy x.
The fighter aspect of the SU 34 is
The Su-34 is not a fighter, and its crews will not be trained in dogfighting, but dogfighting is dead as close in manouvering combat is far too dangerous with modern WVR AAMs. In BVR combat the important factors are missile range and energy and that comes from launch platforms speed and height, and to be honest the Su-34 should be able to climb as high and as fast as any western equivalent fighter and it can certainly carry the full range of AAMs including the RVV-BD/Phoenix equivalent.
It's nothing to do with how well the Su-34 will or will not perform, it's simply a money issue. 140 or so FULLBACKs will give Russia enough multi-role PGM capable strikers to bomb anyone who is retarded enough to ignore the still massive RVSN.
Those worried that it wont be enough should remember that Russia is not the Soviet Union, the Su-34 is far more capable than the Su-24 and at least shares a few components with the Su-35 which should ease costs, and finally once upgraded the Russian Air Force will also have Tu-95MSM, Tu-160M, and Tu-22M3M aircraft for long range and super long range conventional strike missions, so in fact these Russian strike forces will actually be far more capable than Soviet aircraft strike capabilities have ever been.
Makes sense . The manufacturer , however, still uses the designation SU 32 in Russia .
The design bureaus have some input but the actual service designations are military and the Air Force will decide what they call them.
There is a buzz here in Asia that Vietnam may be the first client as they want to replace their 50 odd SU 22 with the SU 34.
Quite a step in performance... I can hear a certain Aussie expert calling for Aussie F-22s...