The JL-9 advanced trainer was developed by Guizhou Aircraft Industrial Corporation. It is also know as the FTC-2000 Mountain Eagle (ShanYing) in its export name. This aircraft is competing for the PLAAF's next generation advanced trainer aircraft programme with another Chinese design, the L-15. The JL-9 made it's maiden flight in 2003.
The JL-9 was designed to be a successor to the earlier JJ-7 trainer and resembles many of it's features. The JL-9 has upgraded avionics and engine. It is intended to train pilots to fly high-performance aircraft, such as advanced forth-generation fighters, the J-10 and Su-27.
It is worth mentioning that it took the shortest time to develop the JL-9 in Chinese aviation history. Aircraft made it's maiden flight only two years after the programme started.
The JL-9 is fitted with a single WP-13F(C) turbojet engine, fitted with an afterburner.
This aircraft has a secondary light attack capability. It is fitted with four underwing hardpoints and one central hardpoint. The JL-9 can carry up to 2 000 kg of weapons, including short-range air-to-air missiles, air-to-surface missiles, bombs and rocket pods. It is also fitted with a 23-mm cannon.
The JL-9 can carry three drop tanks under it's wings and fuselage. Furthermore an in-flight refueling probe can be installed.
The Guizhou JL-9 is offered for export customers as the FTC-2000. The FTC stands for Fighter Trainer Export. This aircraft lacks advanced technologies, however development costs and unit price of the FTC-2000 was kept low, what makes it very competitive internationally. Export variant is offered with Italian Grifo S-7 fire control radar.