Obsolescent and outgunned: the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability Contents

4The future of UK armoured capability

79.The UK’s armoured forces are at a pivotal point regarding their future size, nature and role. The Integrated Review and the associated Integrated Operating Concept are intended to provide a new strategic vision for the Armed Forces and how they will operate. This may entail the requirement to maintain heavy armour heading into the sunset, to be replaced in due course by lighter, more agile forces which draw their combat power from ‘sunrise’ capabilities such as being increasingly ‘networked’ and equipped with superior technology suitable for the information age. However, critics of this approach point out that our most-likely peer adversaries (Russia and China) still retain significant armoured forces and have been modernising them, highlighting the need to retain the UK’s equivalent or rely on allies. The UK faces a series of decisions about its continued readiness for high intensity land warfare and how this may evolve over the coming decades.

The Integrated Review and the Integrated Operating Concept

80.Following the 2019 General Election, the government announced the launch of an Integrated Security, Defence and Foreign Policy Review (‘the Review’), which was heralded as “the most radical reassessment of [the UK’s] place in the world since the Cold War”.8182 The emergence of the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020 led, understandably, to a delay in completing the review and at time of writing the latest estimate for its publication is March 2021.83

81.In common with previous reviews of the UK’s defence posture, the behind- closed-doors nature of the review has been punctuated with media briefings and speculation about possible outcomes and the types of capabilities that may be enhanced or cut back as a result. This has been particularly true with regard to the future of the UK’s armoured capability.84 In binary terms, the two sides of the debate can be summarised as

a)those who see heavy armour as a Cold War anachronism which absorbs funding that could be better spent on new and emerging technologies such as ‘cyber’ (however this might be defined) and unmanned drones; and,

b)proponents of the view that heavy armour is and will remain an important capability, reinforced by recent conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East.

82.The former argument was crystallised in an opinion piece by the Defence Secretary, in which he wrote:

… I recognise we desperately need to reform and modernise our armed forces if we are to meet emerging threats. For too long we have had a sentimental attachment to a static, armoured centric force structure anchored in Europe, while our competition has spread out across the globe. If we are to truly play our role as “Global Britain”, we must be more capable in new domains, enabling us to be active in more theatres”.85

This line of thinking was also highlighted in a speech by General Sir Nick Carter, Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS), in which he said:

“This direction of travel means that some industrial age capabilities will have to meet their ‘sunset’ to create the space for capabilities needed for ‘sunrise’. This will be an incremental process, recognising that in the emerging operating environment some sunset capabilities will be useful in a mix of ‘high-low’ systems but will increasingly become vulnerable in a war fighting context”.86

83.The Ministry of Defence’s recently published Integrated Operating Concept, which makes the ambitious claim that it “represents the most significant change in UK military thought in several generations [which] will lead to a fundamental transformation in the military instrument and the way it is used”.87 The IOC envisages the future of warfighting operations as an increasingly “intense competition between hiding and fighting”, which will require future UK forces to adapt a range of new characteristics: these are reproduced in the figure below.

Characteristics of modernised forces beyond 2030

This table shows the characteristics of modernised forces beyond 2030. The table says it will have smaller and faster capabilities to avoid detection; trade reduced physical protection for increased mobility; rely more heavily on low-observable and stealth technologies; depend increasingly on electronic warfare and passive deception measures to gain and maintain information advantage; include a mix of crewed, uncrewed and autonomous platforms; be integrated into ever more sophisticated networks of systems through a combat cloud that makes best use of data; have an open systems architecture that enables the rapid incorporation of new capability; be markedly less dependent on fossil fuels; employ non-line-of-sight fires to exploit the advantages we gain from information advantage; emphasise the non-lethal disabling of enemy capabilities, thereby increasing the range of political and strategic options.

Source: Introducing the Integrated Operating Concept, Ministry of Defence

The IOC further asserts that:

Expensive, crewed platforms that we cannot replace and can ill afford to lose will be increasingly vulnerable to swarms of self-coordinating smart munitions … designed to swamp defences already weakened by pre-emptive cyber-attack. The economics of warfare are changing the balance between platforms and weapons, and between crewed and uncrewed systems”.88

84.While the language of the IOC may be somewhat impenetrable, it does appear to indicate a direction of travel away from heavy, relatively slow armoured platforms to smaller, lighter, faster and perhaps cheaper platforms that may or may not be crewed and where speed and situational awareness are the key features of survivability. However the CDS has also said: “When you’re up against a determined opponent on the battlefield you have to go close and personal with your enemy–I’m afraid it’s too early to plot the demise of the tank”.89 This suggests the arguments for armoured forces being a ‘sunset’ capability may be more nuanced than they at first appear.

85.That the British Army is currently investing (albeit belatedly) in revitalising its armoured forces through the proposed upgrades to Challenger 2 and Warrior suggests it too believes that these capabilities are still relevant. In its written evidence to this inquiry the Ministry of Defence stated:

“Armoured Fighting Vehicles are at the heart of the British Army’s contribution to high intensity warfighting and therefore integral to deterrence and a vital part of an integrated defence system… The Army’s modernisation programme seeks to ensure that we retain the appropriate capabilities to meet and deter the threat”.

The case for retaining heavy armour

86.In evidence to this inquiry, several witnesses have stated that the tank, and other heavily armoured vehicles, will retain utility on the future battlefield. Ben Barry wrote that recent operations in the Middle East have seen extensive use of armoured forces in urban fighting (specifically Iraq and Syria) where their firepower and protection significantly reduced casualties among the armies employing them.90 He told us:

“Armoured warfare is still a capability of great relevance. What is really important is that tank heavy armour, or, for that matter, medium and light armour, is part of a 21st-century combined arms battle. That 21st-century combined arms battle clearly includes drones and counter-drones. It includes both old fashioned dumb artillery and precision artillery. To make manoeuvre warfare on land work, it needs to be inherently joint and air-land. There is no better exposition of that than the US advance from Kuwait towards Baghdad”.91

87.Francis Tusa and Nicholas Drummond concurred with this view:

“Personally, I still think the tank has value. We had a very strong feeling from the Army in the late 2000s that the tank was irrelevant, as was anything heavy armour. The great phrase of General Richards was, “We are at a ‘cavalry or tank’ moment”. His belief was pretty obviously that he thought the tank was redundant. We then saw British forces in Afghanistan … relying on Danish Leopard 2s to provide vital support on the ground”;92


“To Francis’s point, [heavy armour] is not a sunset capability. We still need it. Recent conflicts in Ukraine in particular, where we have seen heavy armour used, and more recently between Azerbaijan and Armenia, show that heavy armour is extremely important”.93

These three witnesses also noted that where other countries such as Canada and the Netherlands had previously given up their heavy armoured capability, operational experience (for example in Afghanistan) had led to heavy armour being re-acquired rapidly. Ben Barry also made the point that as the armoured forces of potential adversaries continue to be modernised (for example through the wider proliferation of Active Protection Systems and electronic warfare capabilities) the ability of anti-tank guided missiles to defeat enemy armour would be reduced, resulting in greater reliance on the main gun armaments of main battle tanks to defeat other tanks. In these circumstances, reducing the number of tanks available leads to a commensurate loss in combat power.94 Recent press reporting suggests that the Army is planning to retain 150 Challenger tanks, enough to equip two regiments, using the remainder for spares.95

88.In addition to the potential loss of combat power, we heard how the elimination or further reduction in heavy armoured capability would be perceived by our allies. In the context of Russia’s 2014 intervention in Ukraine, the US and Germany have invested in modernising their armoured forces;96 other NATO members are also looking to upgrade and enhance their armoured capabilities.97 When asked if the UK could abandon heavy armour and remain a credible member of NATO, Ben Barry told us:

‘Such a course of action would reduce the UK’s contribution to NATO’s deterrence and military credibility. It would probably be welcomed by the Kremlin. We need to turn our minds back to the NATO summits of 2016 and 2018, which saw commitments made by the alliance and the UK to improve NATO’s ability to deter and reinforce. This included a greatly increased emphasis on armoured forces in both roles … It would be quite difficult to explain to the NATO military structure and key UK allies, including the US, France, Germany and our eastern European allies like Poland and Estonia. It would also be difficult to explain to smaller allies that retain tanks: Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and Norway”.98

The Ministry of Defence acknowledged the importance of the perception of retaining armoured capabilities:

“Beyond the ability to conduct complex combined arms, armoured manoeuvre also underpins our credibility as a ‘reference’ Army on the global stage … AFVs influence target audiences, particularly when combined with effective information activity. This can be through the highly visible sign of the UK’s commitment to deterrence of an adversary, but also by reassuring a host nation and allies, as well as the UK population”.99

89.We share Brigadier Barry’s concern about the message that any reductions in the Army’s ability to conduct high-intensity warfighting in defence of NATO may send to both our allies and adversaries. Whatever the specific conclusions that emerge from the Integrated Review, the Army must retain (or perhaps regain) its credibility. From the evidence provided we doubt whether, currently, the Army has sufficient armoured capability to make an effective contribution to NATO deterrence. We have agreed this report before publication of the Integrated Review: in its response, the Department should set out what effect any reduction in the Army’s headcount as a result of the Review will have on delivery of armoured vehicles and on the Army’s ability to deploy them.

90.In addition to the question surrounding the utility or otherwise of armoured vehicles, evidence from our expert witnesses repeatedly highlighted the fact that “armoured warfare has to be a holistic, combined arms capability”.100 It is clear from recent conflicts in Iraq, Ukraine and Nagorno-Karabakh that the UK’s future armoured capabilities must be augmented by a range of other assets and resources. The lack of a credible short-range air defence system for our land forces, especially in light of the rapidly increasing threat from unmanned aerial vehicles, is of particular concern. We have already noted in Chapter 3 that the Army is also overmatched in terms the artillery firepower available to our likeliest peer adversary and lacks the ability to fire anti-tank missiles from under armour. The Ministry of Defence must ensure that these capability gaps are filled as a matter of urgency.

91.The following table sets out the options if the main battle tanks are retained:


Retain (and upgrade)
150 Warrior


Upgrade 150 of Boxer fleet
to include a turret


Upgrade 150 Ajax to
carry infantry


Rely on NATO allies to provide AFV support.

A more radical option would be to remove the battle tank completely and opt for a light, mobile and agile day one capability.

Equipping future UK forces

92.A crucial aspect in the future of the British Army’s armoured capability is that of technological development and the rapid introduction of new equipment into service. We have seen in Chapter 2 that the recent history of UK armoured vehicle development and procurement has been tortuously slow and wasteful of scarce financial resources.

93.The Integrated Operating Concept clearly places great store in the potential for emerging technologies to enable our forces to adapt to the future battlefield:

“This modernisation will require us to embrace combinations of information-centric technologies to achieve the disruptive effect we need. Predicting these combinations will be challenging. We will have to take risk, accept some failure and place emphasis on experimentation by allocating resources, force structure, training and exercise activity to stimulate innovation in all lines of development, with a responsive commercial function at the leading edge. This will enable adaptive exploitation as opportunities become clear”.101

94.In 2011 the National Audit Office sounded a note of caution about the reliance on novel technology, concluding that Ministry of Defence and the British Army had:

“frequently depended on integrating advanced, but immature, technologies from the design stage. Where there is no clear and compelling requirement for these technologies to be integrated during vehicle design, the Department should have a default position of purchasing off-the-shelf equipment which can be incrementally upgraded in the future, if necessary”.102

Francis Tusa pointed out:

“Having read the comments by the Chief of the Defence Staff and various others, from the chief of the General Staff, I then, apropos of this hearing, looked back to the FRES programme, the future rapid effect system. It kicked off in the late 90s. The language between then and what we have just heard with the new operating concept is very close to identical. The concept was fundamentally flawed when it was FRES and I do not see any difference now”.103

95.Our predecessor Committees have also commented on this issue. In 2004, the Defence Committee stated that: “We are surprised that the Army is prepared to do away with, as yet unspecified quantities of heavy armoured forces when their replacement [FRES] remains a concept which has not even left the assessment phase”104 and concluded that:

“We remain concerned that the decision to give up heavy-weight forces in favour of lighter capabilities is being implemented long in advance of their medium-weight replacements becoming available. The FRES family of vehicles for example remains a distant prospect, not a specific programme with predictable delivery dates”.105

96.We share the concerns of our witnesses and our predecessors. It appears that, as part of the Integrated Review, there is a risk that the Army’s current armoured capabilities (albeit in need of modernisation) are at risk of being denuded on the basis of promises of technically advanced ‘jam tomorrow’. Experience has shown that these technologies have a long gestation period and may not be realised within useful timescales (for example the ‘electric armour’ concepts proposed in the late 1990s). It would be unacceptable for the Army to give up its heavy armoured forces only to be faced with a repeat of the FRES fiasco, followed by the need to urgently procure a new batch of vehicles to meet a sudden crisis. The Department should not place its faith in a ‘big bang’ type development of its armoured capabilities, but rather should focus on the incremental development and experimentation approach aligned with our NATO allies.


97.The Department and the Army have told us that the next-generation of Armoured Fighting Vehicles will be:

“highly advanced, digitised, sensor enabled systems connected to an operational picture via secure fast networks. They will gather and share vital information to ensure Defence has an accurate land, air and littoral picture. They will provide 24/7 intelligence and effect in all weathers and can operate indefinitely in the most hostile environments and, when needed, can deliver overwhelming precision lethality, from a protected position using verified data and operator information to avoid collateral damage. In the longer term upgraded, digitised and networked AFVs will be a critical link to the ‘autonomous’ future of armoured capability through human and machine teaming. They will transform the way we operate and fight”.106

An important aspect of enabling these ‘networked’ armoured vehicles is LE TacCIS (Tactical Communication and Information Systems - also known as Project Morpheus),107 a £3.2 billion programme to upgrade UK land forces’ communications systems.108 The Department told us that:

“LE TacCIS is key … in order to be able to fully exploit Mission System Integration and enable the seamless passage of information on and off [armoured] platforms. The key is influencing new capabilities at the design stage to avoid costly contract amendments, ensuring platforms are an integral part of the network and for in-service capabilities when interventions [can] be made”.

98.Clearly, coherent alignment and integration of LE TacCIS/Project Morpheus with ongoing and future armoured vehicle projects will be important. Historically the Ministry of Defence does not have a good track record of coordinating the delivery of government furnished equipment and resources as an input to dependent armoured vehicle programmes.109 The Department must ensure that Project Morpheus is adequately resourced with technically qualified staff to facilitate coordination and integration with its current and planned armoured vehicle programmes. Based on the Department’s track record in the Land sector we are concerned that the programmes necessary to deliver the capability described above will not be delivered in a timely manner and, given the pace of technology development in this field, may be obsolete before it is delivered. In order to retain a shred of credibility the Army must set out the programmes that comprise the capability described above along with a statement on whether each will be delivered in time to provide the capability described and how obsolescence will be avoided.

Towards a land industrial strategy

99.Since the end of the Cold War there has been a reduced requirement to develop and produce new armoured vehicles. In addition, a number of the programmes started by the Ministry of Defence failed to deliver new vehicles or have been significantly delayed. As the National Audit Office concluded in 2011:

“The armoured vehicle sector is characterised by greater reliance on open-market competition than some other sectors. With the exception of some limited capabilities, Defence policy has not favoured the preservation of national industrial capacity in this sector. Furthermore, the repeated failures of the Department to deliver its acquisition strategies for a number of significant armoured vehicle procurements have led to there being relatively few large scale or long-term contractual obligations in this sector”.110

Francis Tusa explained that the lack of domestic investment in armoured vehicle programmes and upgrades resulted in the “design capability in the UK being run down” which had resulted in some of the technical problems seen on the Ajax and Warrior programmes.111 This assertion was supported by evidence from GDLS UK, who told us that

“AJAX is the first major armoured vehicles programme to be delivered in the UK since Challenger 2 in the early 1990s and consequently it has taken time for both the MoD and industry to rebuild skills in armoured vehicles procurement, design, development and delivery”.112

100.As a consequence of this lack of investment and orders, the UK armoured vehicle industry experienced a period of contraction and consolidation. In the first decade of this century the market response to the Department’s procurement approach was a consolidation of the manufacturers of the armoured vehicle fleet (Alvis, GKN Defence, Vickers) into a single company, BAE Systems Land Systems. In 2019, BAE Systems announced that it had sold a controlling stake in its UK vehicles business to Germany’s Rheinmetall (a key supplier to the Boxer programme), creating Rheinmetall BAE Systems Land. At present the majority of the UK’s active armoured vehicle programmes are being delivered by UK subsidiaries of overseas prime contractors, albeit those with sizeable UK presences. The current major industry suppliers in the UK market are:

101.In its evidence to this inquiry, the Ministry of Defence told us that, as part of the ongoing work to develop a Defence, Security and Industrial Strategy113 it was considering a ‘Land Industrial Strategy’.114 The Department claimed its analysis to date suggested that:

“the UK could derive greater value from its procurement activity by adopting a national industrial strategy for future land capabilities. In addition to creating and maintaining competitive capabilities for the Army, the most obvious gains are operational advantage (in terms of technology) and freedom of action (in terms of security of supply), but there are also fiscal, national prosperity and foreign policy benefits to be gained … “.115

102.Our industry witnesses, unsurprisingly, supported a Land Industrial Strategy (LIS). LMUK, GDLS UK and RBSL had all made substantial investments in new design and production facilities for the Warrior CSP, Ajax and Boxer programmes respectively. These investments had helped to rebuild UK ‘on-shore’ capability in the design and construction of armoured fighting vehicles and their associated systems. Lee Fellows of LMUK told us:

“I am strongly in favour of a land industrial strategy. It was something that was identified in the NAO report in 2011. From a Lockheed Martin perspective, my corporation has invested £12 million in the Ampthill capability, which makes us a unique and world-class turret manufacture and design organisation. We have had some tough lessons to become that. If we do not have a land strategy, my concern is that that will erode”.116

103.Experience suggests that if this this re-established capability is not sustained beyond the current portfolio of projects, it is likely it would again wither and be lost, resulting in further costs and the need to redevelop the necessary skills at a later point.117 The development of a Land Industrial Strategy would help avoid this by providing industry with a clear roadmap for the coming decades and incentivising further investment in skills, technology and infrastructure. We support the Ministry of Defence’s initiative to develop a Land Industrial Strategy. The LIS should place the land sector on an equal footing with the Air and Maritime sectors, providing industry with certainty for the coming decades and ensuring the Army has access to the technical and manufacturing base that will facilitate the development of new technologies as armoured warfare capabilities evolve. The Strategy should also make clear sustaining capability relies on co-operation with allies.

104.The maintenance of a UK armoured vehicle industrial base would also have the benefit of enabling the vehicles currently being produced to be upgraded more often. As noted previously, one reason the Army’s current vehicles are obsolescent is due to their not being modernised on an ongoing basis in contrast to those of our allies and potential adversaries. In evidence to the inquiry, LMUK highlighted the importance of this:

“Sustaining the industrial base will be vital for enabling the through-life capability management of what will be “digital fighting vehicles”. Upgraded (and new) software-enabled vehicles will require more frequent spiral upgrades, rather than the traditional approach of major hardware recapitalisations once a generation. A live industrial base will be required to deliver rolling capability enhancements, including by giving industry the certainty to invest in disruptive technologies that will further enhance the operational utility of land vehicles and other platforms, such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, cyber, and electronic warfare”.118

This point was reinforced by GDLS UK, which told us that the absence of a LIS and concomitant investment would mean there would “be no UK core capability to evolve the digital armoured vehicles capabilities through their full-life or to develop the next generation of armoured vehicles”.119

105.A further potential benefit from the sustainment of a UK land systems industrial base is that it establishes the foundation for future collaboration with our allies. As Nicholas Drummond told us:

“Armoured vehicles have become so expensive. They are like combat aircraft almost because they are so sophisticated in the electronics and weapons that they carry. Any future armoured vehicle, like the next-generation tank, will be an international collaboration … The next-generation main ground combat system being developed by France and Germany at the moment will be an international collaboration. That is the only way that we can procure armoured vehicles in the future. It is only when you have the economies of scale, of several armies using several thousand vehicles, that they become affordable for you”.120

As Nicholas Drummond noted, it seems likely that, should the UK decide to retain a heavy armour capability beyond the life of the current or upgraded Challenger 2, it will need to procure this new capability collaboratively. In April 2020 the French and German governments signed agreements launching the Main Combat Ground System (MCGS programme) which aims to begin the replacement of their respective Leclerc and Leopard 2 tanks by 2035.121 It has been reported that the UK is in discussions to gain access as an observer to the project.122 Peter Hardisty of RBSL told us that

“we need to look at international partners to take forward major projects, such as main ground combat system … It would be central to any strategy for the British to decide whether it is a European or an American engagement that they would pursue. There is one thing quite clear: we cannot sit on the fence. We must make a decision, we must invest and we must have the capabilities inside the UK if we wish to be part of a collaboration … If you do not have the capability to contribute to the development of the platform, you are merely a customer. You will be building to print”.123

This view was reinforced by Carew Wilks of GDLS UK:

“To be an effective collaborator, we have to be credible, such that we can both influence and ensure that the requirements that the UK has can be embedded, and be part of the programme rather than, as Peter mentioned, just a recipient of that. For that to be the case, we need to retain the skills that we identify in the UK, and build on the existing facilities, laboratories and so on that have been invested in so far”.124

We agree that it is important the Ministry of Defence maximises the collaborative opportunities offered by the recent investments in the UK’s armoured vehicles sector. The Department should ensure that it leverages these advantages by making a clear decision about its participation in the Main Ground Combat System. A repeat of the MRAV/Boxer debacle would be unacceptable.

106.A final argument for the revitalisation and sustainment of the UK armoured vehicles sector via the implementation of a Land Industrial Strategy is that of the potential for exports and economic growth (known as the prosperity agenda). Again, evidenced to the inquiry highlighted the potential for such opportunities which could arise from the LIS. The Ministry of Defence stated:

“The UK could also derive wider benefits that would help attend to the Government’s priorities. Revenue from increased export … would contribute to national prosperity … Land systems exports currently make up approximately 7% of total UK Defence exports and it is assessed that Army modernisation offers a considerable opportunity for growth. In addition, securing and generating jobs and STEM skills in the UK’s devolved nations and regions supports the Union and assists with levelling up”.125

Evidence from RBSL also noted the potential economic benefits arising from a LIS:

“a strong and coherent domestic market, as the result of a LIS, will facilitate and support exports. Furthermore, defence exports can be leveraged to support diplomacy and broader government agendas, in addition to contributing to the balance of trade, jobs and prosperity. Only with a prosperous domestic sovereign defence capability can the UK continue to benefit from defence exports.”126

Carew Wilks of GDLS UK echoed this, telling us:

“The opportunity for a spin-off from these defence activities, not only within the UK but for exports at every level of the supply chain, will be tremendous if we can sustain some form of continuous capability and have a long-term plan in which industry can invest alongside other parts of the MoD”.127

Lee Fellows of LMUK concurred, saying:

“If we had a land strategy, we could make sure we focused on what mattered, both to us an industry and to HQ Army and, indeed, export, …There have been good opportunities in export, but I would like to see genuine UK capability sold internationally. I am proud of what we have achieved on Warrior. It has been a tough story. There are export opportunities out there. A land strategy would reinforce that”.128

107.It is apparent that those leading the UK armoured vehicle sector believe there is greater potential for exports and economic benefit to the UK. However, it is not immediately apparent where these opportunities may lie. In recent history the UK has had limited success in exporting its domestically developed armoured vehicles (the Challenger 2 has only one export customer - Oman). We trust the creation of and adherence to the proposed Land Industrial Strategy will improve the UK’s competitiveness in this sector. The Ministry of Defence, the British Army and their Industry counterparts must work together to map out the coming decades for the armoured vehicle sector.

83 Public Accounts Committee Oral evidence: Defence Equipment Plan 2020–2030, HC 693, Thursday 4 February 2021, Q99

84 Fisher, L. ‘Defence chiefs face battle over plan to scrap tanks’, The Times, 25 August 2020; Korksi, D. ‘Tech, not tanks, should be at the centre of our defence planning’, The Times, 4 September 2020; Shipman, T & Ripley, T. ‘We must sacrifice tanks and sell more arms to fund hi-tech warfare, warns defence secretary’, The Times, 6 September 2020

85 Wallace, B. ‘From Arab headdresses to the aerospace industry, the thread of history links us to the Middle East’, The Sunday Times, 6 September 2020.

86 Chief of Defence Staff speech RUSI Annual lecture, Ministry of Defence, 17 December 2020

87 Introducing the Integrated Operating Concept, Ministry of Defence, 30 September 2020, p1

88 Introducing the Integrated Operating Concept, Ministry of Defence, 30 September 2020, p6

89 Chief of Defence Staff speech RUSI Annual lecture, Ministry of Defence, 17 December 2020

90 Written evidence submitted by Brigadier (Retired) Ben W. Barry OBE Senior Fellow Land Warfare International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), AVF005

91 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Defence contribution to the UK’s pandemic response, HC 357, Tuesday 24 November 2020, Q172

92 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659, 6 October 2020, Q2

93 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659, 6 October 2020, Q3

94 Written evidence submitted by Brigadier (Retired) Ben W. Barry OBE Senior Fellow Land Warfare International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), AVF005

96 ‘Ritchie, N. ‘German parliament approves funding for Leopard 2 upgrades’, Defence Today, 26 March 2019; Kuper S, ‘General Dynamics secures US$714m Abrams modernisation deal’, Defence Connect, 11 January 2019

97 Adamowski, J. ‘Poland’s search for new European tanks is contagious’, Defense News, 27 August 2019

98 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Defence contribution to the UK’s pandemic response, HC 357, Tuesday 24 November 2020, Q172

99 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016, para 12

100 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Defence contribution to the UK’s pandemic response, HC 357, Tuesday 24 November 2020, Q170

101 Introducing the Integrated Operating Concept, Ministry of Defence, 30 September 2020, p16

102 Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General: Ministry of Defence The cost-effective delivery of an armoured vehicle capability, HC 1029, Session 2010–12, 20 May 2011

103 Defence Committee Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659, 6 October 2020, Q1

104 House of Commons Defence Committee, Defence White Paper 2003, HC 465-I, Fifth Report of Session 2003–04, Volume 1, 23 June 2004, para 116

105 House of Commons Defence Committee, Defence White Paper 2003, HC 465-I, Fifth Report of Session 2003–04, Volume 1, 23 June 2004, para 159

106 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016

107 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016

109 For example, on the Warrior Capability Sustainment Project, Lockheed Martin UK stated that challenges caused by the provision of government furnished equipment contributed to programme delays and cost-overruns. Written Evidence submitted by Lockheed Martin UK

110 Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General : Ministry of Defence The cost-effective delivery of an armoured vehicle capability, HC 1029, Session 2010–12, 20 May 2011 para 3.16

111 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q31

112 Written evidence submitted by General Dynamics Land Systems UK, AVF0011, Summary

113Review into the UK’s defence and security industrial strategy’, Ministry of Defence, 13 March 2020

114 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016, Executive Summary

115 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016, para 9

116 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q61

117 The consequences of allowing an industrial base to atrophy only to rebuild it when it is again required have been clearly shown in the MoD’s nuclear enterprise and specifically the Astute submarine programme. Due to the gap between the completion of the Vanguard-class and the commencement of the Astute-class submarines skills and infrastructure at the Barrow shipyard and the Ministry of Defence were lost and allowed to degrade, resulting in costly technical delays and overruns. See: Schank, J.F. et al, Learning from Experience: Volume III: Lessons from the United Kingdom’s Astute Submarine Program. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2011.

118 Written Evidence submitted by Lockheed Martin UK, AVF0008, para 23

119 Written evidence submitted by General Dynamics Land Systems UK. AVF0011, para 9

120 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q30

122 Chuter, A and Sprenger, S. ‘British military looks to the ‘Eurotank’ as it weighs its hardware options’, Defense News, 11 January 2021.

123 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q62

124 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q64

125 Written evidence submitted by the Ministry of Defence, AVFF0016, para 9

126 Written evidence submitted by Rheinmetall BAE Systems Land (RBSL), AVF0013, para 9

127 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q61

128 Oral evidence: Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, HC 659,Tuesday 6 October 2020, Q61

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