The Eurofighter Typhoon is a twin-engine, canard-delta wing, multirole fighter, designed for air superiority fighter. The Typhoon is a highly agile aircraft at both supersonic and low speed.It has a quadruplex digital fly-by-wire control system and has less RCS(compared to other aircraft of this class)
Typhoon is equipped with CAPTOR-E (220 km range), An active electronically scanned array radar. This will give Typhoon the capability to detect and track low observable or stealth aircraft. A senior EADS radar expert has claimed that Captor-E is capable of detecting an F-35 from roughly 59 km away.
Typhoon is also armed with PIRATE infrared search and track (IRST) system. Typhoon has demonstrated the ability to detect an F-22 at a range of 80km at Red Flag. It is equipped with the deadly Meteor BVR missile system. It can be considered as the best aircraft for air defence/ SEAD operation because of its high end jamming capability
Then why India did not select Eurofighter Typhoon?
The reasons why India did not select Eurofighter Typhoon are given below:
1)Typhoon is made by UK, Germany, Italy, and Spain. It will be difficult to negotiate when it comes to transferring of technology.
There is no guarantee when it comes to availability of spares for the aircraft( UK denied spares for sea harrier during Kargil war)
Rafale is completely manufactured by France. It is one of the countries which welcomed the nuclear tests of India (1999) and did not impose sanctions. Hence India will have availability of spares under any circumstances.
2)Typhoon costs a whopping 130 million(2017). That excludes the cost of maintenance (Variable Cost+Fixed cost) and cost of R&D(Fixed cost) that you did to develop the plane and all of its components, infrastructure, weapons which include A to A, A to G missiles etc. Rafale cost less money with almost the same capability and performance.
3)The French have given the opportunity to provide source codes where India can integrate future weapons. This can’t be done with the Eurofighter Typhoon and it also prohibits the jet from carrying nuclear weapons.
4)The Rafale is considered a STRATEGIC WEAPON. IAF can carry strategic weapons like missiles armed with nuclear warhead like Mirage 2000. Eurofighter Typhoon does not allow this.
The Rafale is a symbol of Indian nuclear deterrence – something China and Pakistan need to be wary of. Even if the IAF bought 36 jets, the impact is huge.
5)Eurofighter Typhoon is primarily meant for air superiority. India has an aircraft that is even better than Typhoon- the Sukhoi SU 30Mki.
India needed a true multi-role aircraft which is combat proven like Rafale, which can support troops on the ground. Rafale is the best aircraft in the world for ground-hugging flights.
6)Rafale is better than Typhoon when it comes to the role like Strike missions, Escort missions, Defensive Counter Air missions, Air Policing, Reconnaissance.
It played an important role in Libya, provided protection to NATO aircraft over Libyan airspace. It is equipped with the powerful EWS called SPECTRA. It was said that it got disappeared from Libyan radar screen. Enabled with active cancellation technique, it can perform strike missions in heavily defended airspace
It will be further upgraded with under development next-generation Spectra in future. France plans to upgrade Rafale fleet to F4 standard. India will be operating F3 R standard which is much advanced than the aircraft in French Air Force.