UKMOD signs contract for new armoured vehicle

The MOD has signed a £500m con­tract with Gen­er­al Dynam­ics UK for the demon­stra­tion phase of sev­en pro­to­type Scout armoured fight­ing vehi­cles for the Army.

ASCOD SV armoured fighting vehicle
Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ ASCOD SV armoured fight­ing vehi­cle can be adapt­ed to meet the recon­nais­sance require­ment with the stretch poten­tial to meet oth­er roles (com­put­er gen­er­at­ed impres­sion)
Source: Gen­er­al Dynam­ics UK Ltd
Click to enlarge

The pow­er­ful, sophis­ti­cat­ed Scout vehi­cle will pro­vide improved pro­tec­tion against a wide range of threats and bring greater fire­pow­er, improved sit­u­a­tion­al aware­ness, more pro­tec­tion and enhanced mobil­i­ty.

It will car­ry three crew mem­bers and have mount­ed both a new type of 40mm can­non and a machine gun. It will replace the Scim­i­tar armoured fight­ing vehi­cle.

Min­is­ter for Defence Equip­ment, Sup­port and Tech­nol­o­gy, Peter Luff, who signed the con­tract, said:

“Mil­i­tary com­man­ders have stressed the impor­tance of hav­ing a wide range of vehi­cles from which they can select the most appro­pri­ate for spe­cif­ic tasks.

“This con­tract is a major step towards pro­vid­ing an addi­tion­al fleet of com­bat vehi­cles, capa­ble of under­tak­ing oper­a­tions in the most demand­ing ter­rain and ful­ly incor­po­rat­ing lessons from cur­rent con­flicts.

ASCOD SV armoured fighting vehicle
Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ ASCOD SV armoured fight­ing vehi­cle (com­put­er gen­er­at­ed impres­sion)
Source: Gen­er­al Dynam­ics UK Ltd
Click to enlarge

“Work on this phase of the pro­gramme will go ahead along­side the wider Strate­gic Defence and Secu­ri­ty Review which will make sure that the capa­bil­i­ties that we are invest­ing in are those best placed to pro­vide the secu­ri­ty we need for the future.”

The design is derived from mod­i­fy­ing the ASCOD SV vehi­cle, which is already in ser­vice with some NATO nations, is well-proven and is suit­able for export sales.

Work will con­tin­ue along­side this pro­gramme to update exist­ing armoured recon­nais­sance vehi­cles in ser­vice in Afghanistan, such as the Scim­i­tar, to main­tain their oper­a­tional capa­bil­i­ties.

The Chief of Defence Materiel, Gen­er­al Sir Kevin O’Donoghue, said:

“Today’s announce­ment is the result of months of hard work by a wide range of stake­hold­ers across MOD and Gen­er­al Dynam­ics UK enabling us to reach this point, ahead of the orig­i­nal plan.

ASCOD SV armoured fighting vehicle
Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ ASCOD SV armoured fight­ing vehi­cle (com­put­er gen­er­at­ed impres­sion)
Source: Gen­er­al Dynam­ics UK Ltd
Click to enlarge

“The work that has been done has been, and con­tin­ues to be, sub­ject to the most care­ful scruti­ny to ensure the deci­sion is the right one for the long-term needs of the Army.”

Mas­ter-Gen­er­al of the Ord­nance, Major Gen­er­al Bill Moore, said:

“This is a very good moment for the Army. Scout will pro­vide a much bet­ter capa­bil­i­ty to find and track the ene­my, so nec­es­sary for the suc­cess­ful pros­e­cu­tion of oper­a­tions in the 21st cen­tu­ry.

“Scout will also deliv­er improved sit­u­a­tion­al aware­ness, increased fire­pow­er, more pro­tec­tion and enhanced mobil­i­ty, and it will be a key capa­bil­i­ty for land oper­a­tions over the next few decades.”

The Army will be heav­i­ly involved in the project from the start, par­tic­u­lar­ly in the exhaus­tive tri­als with pro­to­type vehi­cles, which are expect­ed to start in 2013. When this phase con­cludes the MOD will be in a posi­tion to place a pro­duc­tion con­tract.

Press release
Min­istry of Defence, UK