The UK Ministry of Defence on Tuesday announced it awarded a £2.8 billion ($3.6 billion) contract for over 500 Boxer armored vehicles for the army.
The vehicles will form part of the Army’s Strike brigades, new units set up to deploy rapidly over long distances across varied terrains, the MoD said in a statement.
Boxer is modular by design- the same vehicle base can be rapidly reconfigured to fill different roles on the battlefield, from carrying troops across deserts to treating severely injured service personnel on the journey to hospital.
Initially the Army will buy a mixture of the troop-carrying variant, ambulances, command vehicles, and specialist designs to carry military equipment.
“I am delighted that we have committed to delivering the Mechanised Infantry capability through the purchase of around 500 battle-winning Boxer vehicles for the British Army. Boxer completes the suite of platforms to equip our new state-of-the-art STRIKE brigade where, alongside Ajax, Boxer’s low logistic need, extended reach, high-mobility, and advanced digitisation will ensure STRIKE is ready for any global scenario,” Major General Simon Hamilton, Mechanised Infantry Vehicle Programme lead for the British Army, said.
The UK announced in 2018 that it would re-join the Boxer programme within the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR) and explore options to modernise its vehicle fleet and meet the Army’s Mechanised Infantry Vehicle requirement.
In July, Germany’s Rheinmetall and UK-based BAE Systems launched a joint venture for the design, manufacture and support of land vehicles based at BAE’s facility in Telford, England.
“The UK played a central role in the original design, development and testing of the Boxer. In re-joining the programme last year, the UK reassumed the rights it had as a project partner,” the MoD release said.
Deliveries of the vehicles will take place from 2023. “I look forward to it arriving in units from 2023,” Defence Secretary, Ben Wallace, said.