Manufacturer: Northrop

Model: P-800

Name: Viper

Type: Unmanned jet fighter

Date: 1981

Status: Prototype evaluation

Country: United States of America

Service: U.S. Air Force

Designation: none


Soon after Northrop submitted their P-700 Adder to the U.S. Air Force, they offered the U.S. Navy a whole different type of combat aircraft in the form of the P-800 Viper remotely-piloted aircraft. Although it didn't have the capacity of a fighter in dogfighting situations, it was more maneuverable and sophisticated than its existing RPV rivals from Ryan and Beechcraft.

In many ways the P-800 was the ancestor of the modern UCAV, taking the RPV one step further than a basic target drone to offer a sort of "intelligent" combat machine capable of communicating with AWACS airborne platforms in real time.

The U.S. Navy was not interested, and when technical problems doomed the six prototypes, the company canceled the program and scrapped them.


The basic image was the same that was used on the P-700 Adder, but modified to such an extent that it was now hardly recognizable... A new blue background was chosen to differentiate the products and suggest a connection to the U.S. Navy as opposed to the Air Force in the other ad.

I think it is unlikely that the technology of the very early 1980s would have allowed for a remotely piloted fighter aircraft to exist, but anyway...

Viewers' comments:
  • The Viper UAV is pleasant, and so convincing for buyers... Stargazer, you should have been seller! (Tophe)

My comments: