US Army eliminates BAE Systems from ‘light tank' competition

by Ashley Roque

This GDLS ‘light tank' prototype is now the only option left in the US Army's Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) competition. (GDLS)

BAE Systems delivered its final ‘light tank' prototype to the US Army in early February, one-and-a-half-years later than anticipated, but the company has now been disqualified from competing due to noncompliance issues, two industry sources with knowledge of the programme separately confirmed to Janes. The decision leaves General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) as the only competitor still vying for the Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) contract.

Neither the army, BAE Systems, nor GDLS wanted to discuss the state of the MPF programme, all citing the ongoing competition.

“The army cannot comment on the status of individual proposals at this time,” Ashley John, the Public Affairs Director for the army's Program Executive Office for Ground Combat Systems, wrote in a 1 March statement to Janes. She noted that the source selection process is still ongoing, and that the army anticipates making a final production selection in mid-2022 and will reach the first unit equipped milestone in 2025.


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Ukraine conflict: NATO enhanced Vigilance Activity battlegroup in Slovakia declared combat-ready

by Nicholas Fiorenza

The NATO eVA battlegroup in Slovakia was declared combat-ready following exercise ‘Strong Cohesion' in Lešť, held from 20 to 22 September, in which Slovak BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicles (pictured) were part of the enemy forces. (Bundeswehr/Lars Pötzsch)

The NATO enhanced Vigilance Activity (eVA) battlegroup in Slovakia was declared combat-ready following exercise ‘Strong Cohesion' in Lešť, held from 20 to 22 September. A spokesperson for the battlegroup told Janes on 23 September that the declaration was made after evaluation by an in-theatre readiness inspectionteam led by Czech Major General Petr Procházka, deputy commander of the Army of the Czech Republic's operations command.

The spokesperson said the exercise was led by the Slovak 2nd Mechanised Brigade, which provided exercise and higher control. The exercise involved 1,000 troops from the Czech Republic, Germany, Slovakia, Slovenia, and the United States.

The exercise took place in a 63 km2


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DVD 2022: UK Boxer programme hit by supply chain pressures

by Tim Ripley

The UK MoD does not expect a delay in the Boxer programme, despite supply chain pressures. (Rheinmetall)

Supply chain pressures are not expected to delay the British Army's Boxer Mechanised Infantry Vehicle programme, according to the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD).

The British Army's Boxer programme director, Colonel Iain Fake, said on the second day of the Defence Vehicle Dynamics (DVD) 2022 event held at the Millbrook Proving Ground from 21 to 22 September that some electronic components were taking 55 weeks to source because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Ukraine war.

An MoD spokesperson told Janes on 26 September, “Production is successfully under way for Boxer and 623 of the new armoured vehicles will be delivered to the British Army. Global supply chain pressures are not unique to defence, and no delays are expected for the first deliveries in 2023 or Boxer's initial operational capability (IOC) in 2025.”


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Ukraine conflict: British Army deploys tank-heavy EFP battlegroup to Estonia

by Tim Ripley

The transfer of authority of the UK-led NATO EFP contingent between the incoming KRH Battlegroup and the outgoing Royal Welsh Battlegroup took place in Tapa, Estonia, on 21 September. (UK MoD/Crown copyright)

The British Army has deployed a tank-heavy battlegroup to Estonia, completing the restructuring of the UK-led NATO Enhanced Forward Presence (EFP) contingent in the Baltic state.

The King's Royal Hussars (KRH) Battlegroup was deployed to Tapa in Estonia, relieving the armoured infantry battlegroup of 1st Battalion, the Royal Welsh regiment, on 21 September.

The KRH has been deployed with two squadrons of Challenger 2 main battle tanks (MBTs) and an anti-tank company from the 1st Battalion, the Scots Guards, which is equipped with Mastiff mine-resistant, ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles and Javelin anti-tank missiles, the British Army announced on its website on 23 September. The NATO contingent is rounded out by a squadron of Danish Leopard 2A7 MBTs and a French mountain infantry company with Véhicule de l'Avant Blindé (VAB) armoured vehicles.


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https://www.janes.com/defence-news/land-forces/latest/us-army-eliminates-bae-systems-from-light-tank-competition

BAE Systems delivered its final ‘light tank' prototype to the US Army in early February, one-and-a-h...

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