With the F-35 in full production, the J-20 needs to be produced as they are supposed to be stealth capable, compared to the current fighters in service with PLA Air Force.
The newest Chengdu J-20 stealth fighter jets are supposed to bridge the gap with US stealth fighters. But, there are too few in service mitigating the capability of Chinese military assets to defend against stealth attacks, reported by South China Morning Post.
Lack of Powerful Dragons is compromising China's ability in the high technology area, which is dominated by the USA.
Showcasing the Chengdu J-20: half baked stealth
The People's Liberation Army Air Force showed a clip of two J-20's engaged in an adversary scenario. The aggressor in the exercise is two J-16s and a J-10c who are the attackers, from the Wang Hai Air Group.
When the five-plane formation was featured for the first time as the Lunar New Year began, media reported that it is the first occasion to try having one J-20, and one J-10C in 2018.
It showcased a kaleidoscope of tactics that the J-20 and other Chinese jet fighters can do, according to Global Times.
These fifth-generation stealth fighter jets are drummed up to be the best of the best when it comes to Chinese air combat prowess. PLA Air Force is commemorating its 70th year in November since the founding of the People's Republic of China.
How many Chengdu J-20s are needed against the US
Based on the might of the US military and opposing forces, Chinese planners are looking at one hundred to 200 J-20 step up a wide variety of missions that will be tasked. This comment was mentioned by the Hong Kong military commentator Song Zhongping. He mentioned the statement on Fighter Jets World.
Song claims that the J-20 can engage the enemy without its radar signature compromised. Another is it can overcome American air superiority with armaments that will tag and engage with better radar at beyond visual range (BVR).
A problem with the J-20 turbo fan engines
Sources in Chinese alleged that the J-20s that have been built by 2019's end is 50 of these topline stealth jets. Problems with the WS-15 high thrust turbofan engines have experience hitches in technical aspects. As a result, the J-20 engineers are way behind in getting the engines working. Similar American or Soviet designs have had better luck and are installed in their 5th generation fighters.
A stop-gap to get the J-20 flying without the intended engine is having the WS-10B or Russian-built AL-31FM2/3 jet engines installed. The current J-20's in service will be limited in air agility with a less than stealth capacity.
More F-35s will be flying by 2025
The J-20 is presumed to be a match to the F-35 Lightning II stealth fighters when completed. But more F-35s are in service and are in production already. Around 200 F-35s will flying by 2025 in the Indo-Pacific, cited Business Insider.
Sources reveal that the Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group production line can assemble only on J-20 a month. Assembly of the J-20 is paltry when Lockheed Martin's Fort Worth assembly plant has brought 134 F-35s to customers in 2019. They produce many F-35s that were over 47% in 2018, compared to Chinese productions of J-20s.
The J-20 is too far behind in the production and development of its topline fighter that may not even be a match at all.