F-22 Raptor vs. the Mythical YF-23: Why the F-23 Never Happened

Ultimately, the Air Force selected Lockheed’s YF-22 design, which was also an exceptional aircraft, for its ATF requirement. The YF-22 would eventually evolve into today’s F-22A Raptor, which became operational in late 2005 and remains the single best air superiority fighter ever built. However, in many ways, the YF-23 was a superior design that was well ahead of its time.

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