B-1B Lancer

The elegant Rockwell B-1A Lancer Cold War bomber was designed to replace the B-52 and B-58 Hustler, having the payload of the former and the speed of the latter. It never did replaced the B-52, but it did serve alongside it in the late 1980s. The early version of the B-1 was the B-1A. Designed as a high-altitude Mach 2.2 capable supersonic swing-wing bomber, it might have been a great aircraft had Soviet missiles not proven easily capable of reaching the B-1A’s planned operational altitude. President Carter had the aircraft cancelled. However, President Ronald Reagan had it brought back to life after it was redesigned as a Mach 1.25 capable low-altitude penetration bomber, redesignated the B-1B. And this is what went into production; 100 built.