Bulldog will be replaced by a yet to be determined platform with procurement activity starting in 2025.
The information came to light via the response to a Parliamentary written question.
Kevan Jones, MP North Durham, asked:
“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what will replace Bulldog in the armoured role on 14 Signal Regiment (Electronic Warfare).”
Jeremy Quin, Minister for Defence Procurement, answered:
“The current out of service date for Bulldog is 2030. The Bulldog capability will be replaced by another platform or family of platforms, yet to be determined. The Army has assigned resources to replace Bulldog and, on current plans, procurement activity should commence in 2025.”
In an analysis of the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability, the Defence Select Committee published this report stating:
“Armoured personnel carriers (APCs), also referred to as mechanised infantry vehicles (MIVs), are more lightly armoured vehicles, designed to enable the movement of troops while providing a degree of protection from artillery fire and small arms. They are typically not intended to engage in direct combat with enemy armoured forces.
Currently the British Army’s primary mechanised infantry vehicle is the FV430 series. Some 2,500 of these vehicles were introduced to service from 1962, the most common variant being the FV432 armoured personnel carrier. This vehicle family has been the workhorse of the British Army’s mechanised units for 60 years, and repeated failures (see paragraphs 18 to 20) in procuring replacement vehicles have required their retention for much longer than originally envisaged.
In 2006 the Army signed an £85 million contract to update at least 500 of the FV430 vehicles to a modernised version (the Mk3 or ‘Bulldog’ variant, including improved armour, a new engine and upgrades to other automotive components) and these upgraded versions saw operational service in both Iraq and Afghanistan. During our inquiry we challenged the Ministry of Defence on the continued use of these obsolete vehicles.”
Lieutenant General Tickellws quoted as telling the Commitee:
“We need to replace Bulldog, no question. There is a programme called the Armoured Support Vehicle that will replace Bulldog. That will come online at the back end of this decade. In an ideal world, if I had a magic wand, would we do it sooner? Yes, but, frankly, there is continued need to prioritise.
Actually, the Bulldog is very cheap to run and delivers people to the right place at the right time, and it is therefore right that we prioritise programmes such as Challenger, Warrior, Ajax and Boxer, but we absolutely recognise that we need to get after Bulldog sooner rather than later.”