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Luke is seen to fly an X-wing with Red Five markings throughout five of the movies (and one of the TV shows). In the Legends continuity, his original X-wing from the Battle of Yavin crash-lands the day after the Death Star and is destroyed. In current canon, however, I haven't been able to find whether he keeps using the same X-wing through the Original Trilogy and beyond, or if they keep getting blown up and he keeps getting new ones. His X-wing in The Rise of Skywalker (and The Last Jedi) is referred to as "Red Five", but it could easily be a different craft with the same callsign.

Is there anything in current canon that indicates whether or not his original ship survived, and if not, how many X-wings has he flown?

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  • @Valorum This claims that it's the same one, but appears to be unsourced.
    – Milo P
    Feb 18 at 16:03
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    Aye. I'm going to out together a proper answer if no-one else does. Suffice to say that it's the same X-Wing.
    – Valorum
    Feb 18 at 16:18
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    I confess to not knowing any EU material - but surely he also landed his X-Wing on cloud City, then was carried away on the MF, leaving his X-Wing behind. I would assume "Red 5" was his callsign, not his ship's, and he was assigned to a new fighter? In current air forces, "Red 3" would be your position in a flight of planes, not a fixed call sign that stays with that plane - i.e. the lead plane would always be "Red 1" regardless of which plane the flight lead was assigned to fly that day.
    – Andrew
    Feb 25 at 3:25
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    There's a running gag on the Expounded Universe podcast where they can reliably tell that Luke's about to crash in a Legends book because he's explicitly not using his personal X-Wing. Pure speculation but it seems like some EU authors were told that particular ship was important and that they couldn't destroy it.
    – Withad
    Feb 25 at 10:49
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According to Ultimate Star Wars, it does seem to be the same fighter.

Red Five is Luke Skywalker's pilot designation when he destroys the first Death Star. The name becomes synonymous with the actual X-wing fighter he flies.

(page 328, emphasis added)

The book contains a two page spread specifically about Red Five, referring to it as a single ship, and listing its appearances as including episodes IV, V, VI, and VIII (the 2019 edition of the book was published before TROS). It describes the sunken fighter seen in The Last Jedi as the ship's "ultimate fate":

When Luke's attempt to train another generation of Jedi fails, he pilots his X-wing to its final destination. [...] A piece of the fighter's wing - once used to fly in epic battles to save the galaxy - now serves as a makeshift front door to Luke's simple hut.

[...]

While it isn't the first time Red Five has been submerged under the water, this time seems more final.

(page 329)

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Back in the pre Timothy Zahn days, it was said that the X-Wing luke flies in TESB is older than the one he flew at the Battle of Yavin. I think this is based on the computer display and other differences in the films.

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    Hi, welcome to this site. Who actually said this, and where? You could improve this answer by editing it to add a precise quote, along with the relevant source. Aug 30 at 12:16
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Actually, it's not!

So here's the deal. In ESB, Luke crash lands on Dagobah. He is, however, able to get out after training with Yoda and he goes to Cloud City on Bespin. There is a trap set and Luke is picked up by the Millennium Falcon after his fight with Vader. The Falcon escapes and leaves to the Rebel fleet at a rendezvous point. This means that Red Five was left at Bespin! Luke does not fly in the Battle of Endor in the next movie, but he has an X-Wing, a new model bearing the callsign Red Five. That means that he gets a new one and it is likely the one seen in the Sequel Trilogy.

I hope that answered your question.

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  • According to Wookiepedia (which contains both canon and non-canon) it seems Luke went through five different x-wings. Mar 4 at 17:15
  • The difficulty is establishing that (in canon) the X-Wing he uses between ANH and ESB is the same ship. We can easily link the ship he uses in ESB with RoTJ and the sequel trilogy. In the EU, he goes through ships as fast as you can say "the plot needs him to crash".
    – Valorum
    Mar 4 at 17:18
  • Okay, I see. So yes, it basically works both ways; depending on if you believe in the EU over the Disney approved canon or vice versa. Mar 4 at 17:22

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