The Kawasaki T-4 is a subsonic intermediate jet trainer used by the JASDF. In November 1981 Kawasaki was awarded the contract to produce 220 T-4s with the actual final production number being 212. The aircraft was designed to replace the Lockheed T-33 and Fuji T-1. The first prototype flew on July 29, 1985 with the first production aircraft flying in June 1988 and delivery of the first T-4 to the 31st and 32nd Flying Training Squadrons, 1st Air Wing 3 months later.
The Blue Impulse is the 11th Squadron, 4th Air Wing of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force and the national aerobatic demonstration team. They formed in 1960 and originally named Tenryu but changed to Blue Impulse. Their first aircraft were 6 F-86
Sabres and in 1982 after 545 demonstrations they moved to the Matsushima Air Base and began using the Mitsubishi T-2. The T-2 was used for 175 demonstrations until 1996 when they switched to the Kawasaki T-4. In 2016 to celebrate 20 years flying theT-4; the Blue Impulse aircraft were given a special paint scheme