The A400M is a viable option for the strat component but I doubt has a very good chance. It was too much capability for the tactical lift and I expect it is both too capable and not capable enough for the strat lift. NZ doesn't need the landing capabilities of the aircraft for the strat mission nor the defensive systems. The outsize cargo would be an advantage, but likely not decidedly so, as would the ramp loading.
I think Tom Enders foretold this one:
“Exporting the A400M is a very different game from the smaller transports built [at the same location] in Spain. The A400M is a product of the requirements of six [partner] nations who are very sophisticated, and you just don’t find those kind of customers around every corner,” Enders said on 14 February, adding, “I am optimistic that there will be exports, but it won’t be in the hundreds [of aircraft].”
Seems like people are happy to play the game they know instead of picking up a new game, especially because it has lower entry fees.
Seems like some members should read some of the comments in https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/sup ... red-option
“After considering the range of military air transport aircraft carefully, the Super Hercules has been selected as it offers the necessary range and payload capability as well as fully meeting NZDF’s requirements,” says Ron Mark.
So much for those saying C130J lacked required capabilities.
The C-130J is a proven aircraft, with more than 400 C-130Js having been delivered to over 21 nations, including the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada.
“It is used by key defence partners and carries a greater payload faster and further than the current fleet, with no loss of ability to land where our current Hercules are deployed.
Looks like they are happy with C130 family off field landing capabilities.
“Tactical air transport capability is one of the highest value assets available to New Zealand, offering huge utility to the community and nation, enabling movement of personnel and cargo around the country, the South Pacific, down to Antarctica and all around the globe.
“We need a proven performer, and this aircraft is tried and tested. We cannot take risks with what is one of our most critical military capabilities,” says Ron Mark.
It seems like Enders comments on the A400M program turning the corner on risk are not holding up in the market place.
If you consider that NZ currently operate two 757s in that role I expect the intention is to continue that model and look for an airliner variant. The runway at McMurdo is now capable of taking a decent airliner so something as large as an A330 is possible (which would be a good option although no NZ operated A330s at this time).
Agree a small wide body seems better suited since 757s aren't being made any more, we don't have a cargo/militarized variant of A321, and a wide body's payload/range are really beneficial in that role.