Thales Optronics in Glasgow will supply sights for the Scout Specialist Vehicle (SV) programme as part of a new £390 million contract with General Dynamics UK.

Amongst the 589 pieces of equipment to be produced will be the Primary Sight, this will enable commanders to maintain a 360° view of their surroundings. It includes wide area capability that automatically locates and tracks potential targets from their thermal signature, alerting the vehicle’s crew to their presence. All the equipment will be built at Thales UK’s cutting edge optronics facility on the Clyde, sustaining a large number of highly skilled engineering and manufacturing jobs.

The Scout is a development of the ASCOD armoured fighting vehicle used by the Spanish and Austrian armed forces. General Dynamics UK was selected as the winner for this contract beating BAE Systems’ CV-90 proposal. Deliveries of Scout SV are planned to begin in 2017 and full operational capability being established by 2019.

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:

“These latest contracts on the Scout SV programme show that Defence spending benefits the whole of the UK, with investment boosting local economies and creating jobs nationwide, from Scotland to Wales.

This Government has committed to increase defence spending each year for the rest of the decade, alongside a £160 billion Equipment Plan for our Armed Forces, which will give them the kit they need. Our investment in Defence will not only help to keep Britain safe but is creating and sustaining jobs and key skills in industries right across the UK.”

Lieutenant General Sir Chris Deverell, Chief of Materiel Land at DE&S, said:

“It is very encouraging to see progress on the Scout programme and this is down to the hard work of DE&S staff and their colleagues in the defence industry.

As the army’s first fully digitised armoured fighting vehicle, Scout SV will be effective in the most difficult terrains around the world and by selecting the most advanced and appropriate systems for Scout SV, we can be sure that the UK’s Armed Forces will have the very best equipment possible.”

The Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell said:

“This is welcome news for Glasgow and the rest of Scotland. This contract underlines how our engineers continue to excel in providing skills, expertise and support for the Armed Forces activities across the globe.

The UK’s defence industry is worth billions of pounds and generates economic benefits for communities across Scotland, through jobs, supporting services and – as today’s announcement shows – contracts through the supply chain.”


  1. Guess we should be grateful British industry is getting to provide a bit of glass. Pity the rest of the Scouts are using American and German items while being built in Spain while Leeds and Newcastle factories are shut down. The Navy’s 4 new tankers being built in S.Korea. The Americans stopping the new carriers from adopting catapults to reduce the unit cost of the STOVL F35B’s that their US Marine Corp would be lumbered with. Resulting in the UK being faced with the prospect of being forced to buy a inadequate number of US built aircraft, with the comparative flying capabilities of Christmas Turkeys. Yep Mr Fallon, this government’s record of supporting Britain’s manufacturing base and self defence capacity is truly remarkable.


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