HELSINKI — The Finnish defence ministry said Tuesday it has scrapped plans to renew its aging fleet of trainer aircraft after none of the planes on offer seemed to fit.
A German model, made by Grob Aircraft, was deemed too expensive, daily Helsingin Sanomat reported.
A Czech alternative, made by Zlin Aircraft, seemed to fit the bill until the Finnish pilots actually tried to get into one.
"They wouldn't have fit in the plane. It's so small," the air force's chief of procurement Kari Renko said.
Other plane manufacturers, Beechcraft from the United States, Korea Aerospace Industries, Pilatus Aircraft from Switzerland and Pacific Aerospace from New Zealand, all withdrew from the tender after it became clear that the Finns thought their turbo-propeller models were too pricey.
Finland, a non-NATO country with a 1,340-kilometer (830-mile) border with Russia, currently trains its pilots with a fleet of 28 Finnish-designed Vinka basic trainer planes dating from the 1980s.