The A400 was never intended for verticle capability. It was designed to have short field takeoff and landing. It is a very capable aircraft.
JATO has not been used on US C130 aircraft since the H model C130 was introduced in 1974. The H model -15 engines create the same power as the E models -7 engined aircraft with JATO. However, there are a few special models that still use JATO, but they are few and highly specialized. Although I’m a big fan of the C130, I must admit that it’s starting to grow a bit in the teeth now and needs replacing. A400M is a perfect replacement. It is very similar in appearance to the A400 but with greatly improved performance in all aspects! I remember seeing it fly for the first time a few years ago and was absolutely amazed and impressed! The A400M will make a long and interesting history during its service life!
The most interesting thing about the A400M is that it’s the only aircraft designed by Airbus that isn’t ugly. The A220 is Airbus’ only other good look, but it was designed by Bombardier.