British Army tank numbers 'to be cut by a third'

The British Army is to cut the number of Challenger 2 tanks it has in service by a third due to budget constraints, according to a report in the Times.

This would mean that only 148 out of the 227 vehicles will be revamped going forward, with the rest to be used for either parts or for deployment in emergency situations.

If this were the case, it would mean Britain's fleet of tanks will be smaller than that of Serbia, Cambodia or Burma and would place it 56th on a global league table of vehicle numbers.

The source at the Times said it had been told by a defence insider that £31 billion has been stripped from the army's budget since 2010.

However, a spokesperson from the Ministry of Defence insisted no final decision on tank numbers has been made, adding: "We are committed to significantly upgrading our Challenger 2 tanks, ensuring we have the best weaponry and armour."

The Challenger 2 entered service between 1998 and 2002 and is manufactured by BAE Systems Land Systems.

Back to listing