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First a Taxi, then Flight: The F-35 Lightning II completed its first self-powered ground taxi test on Dec. 7 and is on its way to a last series of tests before first flight, per a statement from prime contractor Lockheed Martin. Lockheed spokesman John Smith would not hazard a guess as to the actual date of the first flight, but it is slated for this month. Next up are medium-speed taxi tests, traveling at from 75 to 92 mph; this first taxi only reached about 35 mph.