Here's a thought - if Boeing was going to get more maneuverability out of the design by adding the elevators, would it not, in principle, have the same effect to mount canards instead? I don't know, off the top of my head, if the delta had better wing area, but if you matched up the wing to get the same wing area, and put in canards, it might look a little better?
One might surmise, they would have put a second payload bay along the bottom of the aircraft, obviously - I'm guessing it would be somewhere behind the bulge?
Was BAE Systems always on board with the F-35, or did they come in Afterwards - if they came in afterwards, the could likely have put in their two pennies on the design's delta/conventional dispute by putting up the work they've put in on the Tiffie, so we could also see the concept of the F-32 being a little more Tiffied with the delta/canard config, in theory.
The issues were far wider ranging than just adding maneuverability and canards are not
considered stealth friendly in some quarters.
IF the X-32 had won and entered production in its as tested aerodynamic
form it would have had two weapons bay, one each side, just like the X-35.
The design always had two weapons bays, only one was used on the X-32
because that is all that was needed for test purposes.
Ongoing ASTOVL research in the US and UK begat CALF which was joined with JAST to become JSF.
BAe was independently involved with ASTOVL (Advance Short take-off Vertical Landing) research for years.
The companies selected for CALF (Common Affordable Lightweight Fighter) were Lockheed and MDC,
which ever team won, the aircraft was to be designated X-32. BAe teamed with MDC in 1994 for the
project. Boeing was brought in that year when the program was changed to include a direct-lift concept.
Later in 1994 Northrop Grumman was added to the MDC/BAe team, leaving Boeing and Lockheed to discuss
the possibility of combining effort on the X-32. Neither was willing to give up their design so the teaming
Meanwhile the JAST (Joint Advanced Strike Technology) was created which combined the USAF MRF (Multi Role Fighter)
and USN A-F/X programs which were aimed at replacing, respectively the F-16 and the F-18/A-6, into one technology
The similarities between CALF and JAST became obvious to everyone so both were merged under the JAST banner.
The plan was changed to have two finalist teams/designs, the X-32 designation was retained from CALF and the new
designation of X-35 was created for the other airframe. The program was renamed JSF in 1996 and contracts were
awarded in November of that year to Lockheed-Martin and Boeing. MDC was excluded and began merger negotiations
with Boeing. L-Mart teamed with Northrop-Grumman and BAe.
The L-Mart proposal had canards at one point but they were dumped by late 1995.
p.s. for those wondering about the gun in the X/F-32, the intended mounting was in the left side of the
lower forward fuselage behind the intake.
Info from the 1999 Flight International supplement Joint Strike Fighter: Inside the 21st Century Warfighter