The Ministry of Defence have confirmed that “there may be a requirement for Warrior to be used in some reconnaissance roles” until the troubled Ajax armoured vehicle is brought into service.

The Ministry of Defence previously stated that while they would no longer upgrade Warrior, the armoured fighting vehicle would remain in service until replaced by Boxer. A total of £430m had been spent on the Warrior upgrade programme. You can read more about Warrior upgrades here.

Warrior upgrade scrapped but remaining in service

The information on Warrior also covering for Ajax to light via a Parliamentary question.

Tobias Ellwood, Member of Parliment for Bournemouth East Commons, asked via a Parliamentary written question:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department is taking steps to develop the (a) Boxer and (b) Warrior into a reconnaissance vehicle to replace the Scimitar.”

Jeremy Quin, Minister of State for the Ministry of Defence, responded:

“As announced in the Defence Command Paper “Defence in a Competitive Age”, Warrior is being retired from service and Boxer will be the primary mechanised infantry platform for the army. AJAX will replace CVR(T) in reconnaissance roles. CVR(T) is expected to go out of service in 2023 and there may be a requirement for Warrior to be used in some reconnaissance roles until AJAX is brought into service.”

The Ministry of Defence recently ruled out purchasing an alternative to Ajax as it “remains committed” to the troubled armoured vehicle. Trials of the British Army’s new Ajax armoured vehicles were recently halted for a second time after concerns were again raised over noise.

The Ministrty of Defence confirmed that following renewed concerns on the impacts of noise, “all Ajax trials have been suspended and will only resume when we are assured that mitigations are fully effective.”

Last month, Defence Minister Jeremy Quin visited the Millbrook Proving Ground where independent testing has been conducted on Ajax. He commented:

“This long-running troubled programme requires ongoing intense work by our industrial partners and ourselves to ensure its delivery. In achieving this, the safety of our personnel will always come first.”

Earlier in the year we reported that trials of Ajax armoured vehicles were halted at the end of last year to March this year due to excessive vibration and noise, leaving crews suffering from nausea, swollen joints and tinnitus.

General Dynamics UK said at the time that it is working with the Army on the issues.

“Recent trials have confirmed many of the required capabilities across the AJAX Family of Vehicles, including operations across the full range of speed and reverse step obstacle climb. A small number of remaining issues are being reviewed and closed out in partnership with the British Army and Ministry of Defence ahead of Initial Operating Capability.”

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Tom Keane
Tom Keane
1 day ago

Just asking… what was so wrong with the warrior, that it had to be replaced completely?

Could it not have been upgraded?

Goldilocks
Goldilocks
1 day ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

Don’t get me started on the Warrior upgrade mate…

Last edited 1 day ago by Goldilocks
Tom Keane
Tom Keane
1 day ago
Reply to  Goldilocks

I take it you have a dim view of warrior, and upgrading it?

Klonkie
Klonkie
22 hours ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

I suspect Goldilocks’ comment refers to the massive cost overrun estimates to upgrade Warrior.

pete wait
pete wait
23 hours ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

Problematic gun not suitable for old turret as BAE told them and required new turret to be produced. However recoil causing turret to wobble when fired not resolved. Also rumours that side mounting of chain gun caused some ejection jams ! Bushmaster would have been a suitable alternative and would provide commonality of ammunition which is a well used argument for smoothbore for CR3 !

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
17 hours ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

Have a look at the articles on the excellent Think Defence Web site… Everything you ever wanted to know about Warrior, FRES and some stuff you didn’t know about containers.

Excellent resource.

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 day ago

Just wondering out of Warrior upgrade and Ajax which is the bigger mess ? If as seems likely Ajax goes to the big scrapheap in the sky would it be worth reviving the Warrior upgrade ?

Mark
Mark
1 day ago

So if the boxer is to replace warrior are they sticking a turret on boxer or having glory holes like the original bmp to shoot out of.

John Clark
John Clark
1 day ago
Reply to  Mark

They could just buy something off the shelf, that works and is in production, but that would just be crazy……..

Mark
Mark
1 day ago
Reply to  John Clark

We had a discussion on FB last night but some people were non to receptive to my argument of ditching it and replacing warrior and Ajax with the Lynx. Hungary is building a new plant to manufacture them so why not just buy them from Hungary off the shelf. That way we’d have commonality with lots of other NATO nations Inc the Yanks and Australia if they select it also. Lots of money has been wasted and lets not forget it’s our Tax money. Ajax is years and billions down the road.

John Clark
John Clark
23 hours ago
Reply to  Mark

No arguments from me Mark….

Klonkie
Klonkie
22 hours ago
Reply to  Mark

good call Mark

Jack
Jack
1 day ago
Reply to  Mark

Just buy the BAE CV90 MK1V and manufacture as much as possible in the UK, that is what has just been offered to the Czechs.

Mark
Mark
1 day ago
Reply to  Jack

CV 90 built in Sweden and final fit done in Czech, it would be interesting to see price of cv90 Vs lynx and what weapons and sensor fits they have. But I don’t think neither Rheinmetall nor Bae have the facilities at present without more money being spent.
It’s just a big cluster fuck.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
21 hours ago
Reply to  Mark

There’s also Hanwah’s Redback IFV which the Australian army are testing alongside the Lynx. Hanwah do the K90 155mm SPH so I wonder if they’ll get a look in for their IFV too?

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
21 hours ago
Reply to  Jack

With a should be short lead time and existing CV90 supply chain right on our door step. Too sensible!!! Lol.

Pacman27
Pacman27
1 day ago

once again the MOD has over complicated something that just isn’t that complex. If you have tanks, then make all the other assets in that formation based off the same hull (like the Israelis successfully do) one set of parts etc. so, going forward, Strike and all things strike should be on Boxer and Heavy Armour should be based on whatever platform Challenger 4 is. This is not rocket science – we end up with 2 hull types that deliver all the capability we need. If we need something lighter and air mobile that would be a third platform etc.… Read more »

Andrew Thorne
Andrew Thorne
1 day ago
Reply to  Pacman27

Concur with you 100%. How come the UK ba**s this up each time when it is so simple to get right first time?

andy
andy
1 day ago

warrior was good i served in 2li and we had them, but they had flaws, the biggest one was rardon, having to manual load a clip of 3 30mm rounds lucky we only used HE or APDS and a good gunner could sharp knock them out, but it was constant training, and they proved there weight in gold out in Bosnia, even with the extra bolt on armour, but like everything they are now outdated and need replacing but why we as a nation cannot build what should be something simple i do not know, a lot of people blame… Read more »

AlexS
AlexS
8 hours ago
Reply to  andy

Those companies did no sold enough to exist on their own.

Andrew Thorne
Andrew Thorne
1 day ago

When Ajax enters service…that line made me laugh…If they can’t get these things right first time then the army needs to be relieved of its role in procurement and we need to go back to the days when we had SQEP people in the MoD with PhDs as well as engineering experience in industry.

David Steeper
David Steeper
11 hours ago
Reply to  Andrew Thorne

Now that is a good idea. Problem would be a lot of very cushy desk jobs would disappear ! The Army would not like that.

Peter S
Peter S
1 day ago

I think Ajax and variant deliveries were planned to run until 2029 in the original manufacturing contract. With the delays and even assuming the faults can be fixed, Warrior could be in use for a long time yet.
I get the comment that there is no plan B ie to buy an alternative. But if Ajax has to be cancelled, we will need a tracked IFV. The only option is to upgrade Warrior without the problematic CTA and replacing Rarden with an automatic 30 mm. I understand LMUK have the capability to do this.

BB85
BB85
1 day ago
Reply to  Peter S

The info leaked doesn’t sound like a quick fix will be possible if the hulls have been manufactured outside of the design tolerance. I’m not sure how that’s even possible with modern manufacturing, it almost feels deliberate because of brexit. I assume GDUK will need to scrap the 100 original hulls and move everything to the UK to be built properly at their own cost or cancel the contract.

Dern
Dern
23 hours ago
Reply to  Peter S

Ajax isn’t an IFV, it’s a Scout Vehicle.

Peter S
Peter S
10 hours ago
Reply to  Dern

You can use an IFV in a scout role (that’s what is going to happen short term) but not the other way round. After Warrior upgrade was cancelled, there was talk of Ares filling the IFV role, perhaps with an unmanned turret. But the Ajax problems seem to affect all variants. It would make sense, not least financial, to use the Warrior hulls to cover both roles. Some of the roles planned for Ajax variants never needed a vehicle of such size and weight so could be handled by other lighter platforms. There are enough Warrior hulls to provide the… Read more »

Dern
Dern
5 hours ago
Reply to  Peter S

The problem is Warrior brings very little to the Scout Role that CVRT doesn’t already, only with a bigger footprint, and a big empty space in the back. As a stop gap, because CVRT is worn out and AJAX delayed, okay, but it’s not a replacement for AJAX.
And regardless of if Ajax is cancelled or not, the British Army is taking a tracked IFV holiday.

David Steeper
David Steeper
5 hours ago
Reply to  Dern

‘Holiday’ that’s a very polite way of describing it !
  :wpds_smile: 

Dern
Dern
3 hours ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Eh, as much as I dislike the Army cuts, really tracked IFV capability is one of the things that would hurt the least with Boxer coming into the fleet (especially if there is scope to procure a turreted variant). Ideally I’d like to see the Army expand to a triangular armoured division with a detached cavalry brigade, but that won’t happen until someone realises that Airforces and Navies don’t actually win wars without ground troops.

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 hour ago
Reply to  Dern

The Army as such doesn’t really exist at a policy, strategy level. It’s a loose collection of vested interests. The Cavalry want their tracked vehicles see Challenger 3 and Ajax. We were in the same place with horse Cavalry in the 30’s when a wise Def Sec backed by his PM finally succeeded. Even the first world war couldn’t get the Cavalry to abandon their horses. Sooner or later the Army will have to choose which are the future tracked AFV’s or UAV’s. They probably cannot afford both. The current Def Sec understands this I think/hope but even he couldn’t… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 hour ago
Reply to  David Steeper

No offense, but the idea that the first world war should’ve persuaded the army to give up on horses is silly. Even the cavalry actions that where executed in 1916 and 1917 on the western front where successful, not to mention the fact that they where vital in 1914 and 1918 as well as on the Palestine front, to the point where cavalry was a better mobile arm in 1918 than the Whippet tanks. If anything the lessons of WW1 was that cavalry still had a role on the battlefield. As for “Mafias” those exist in all three services, what… Read more »

David Steeper
David Steeper
43 minutes ago
Reply to  Dern

No offense taken. I agree on Middle East in WW1 but we’ll have to disagree on W.Front. I think Ukraine and Nagorno Karabakh are examples of the scale of change UAV’s will bring to future conflicts. Time will tell. On Mafias yes they exist in all 3 services but I haven’t seen evidence of the Carrier, Sub etc Mafias being able to ‘I believe’ overturn a Def Sec/MoD decision by lobbying the PM. =

Dern
Dern
20 minutes ago
Reply to  David Steeper

The Western Front issues with Cavalry where mainly to do with 2 factors: 1) Most Cavalry being held at Army-Army Group command levels, meaning that during 1916 and 1917 the number of levels information had to go through before it reached the cavalry was insane, and effectively meant that by the time cavalry had the information it needed, the opportunites had passed. *edit forgot to say 2)* 2) approaches usually had to be prepared through allied trench systems for the cavalry. Most Cav units had developed dedicated trench crossing units, but tactical trench crossing needed to be saved for enemy… Read more »

Last edited 14 minutes ago by Dern
David Steeper
David Steeper
6 minutes ago
Reply to  Dern

I haven’t read anywhere about the op’s you describe. I will have to get hold of some new books. Thanks.