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Armoured Fighting Vehicles

Volume 475: debated on Friday 16 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when he expects the Piranha V future rapid effect system utility vehicle to come into service; and how many he plans to order; (205394)

(2) pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 8 May 2008, Official Report, columns 39-40WS, on the future rapid effect system utility vehicle design decision, what the next stage of the utility vehicle programme will be; when he expects that stage to be concluded; and how much it will cost;

(3) pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 8 May 2008, Official Report, columns 39-40WS, on the future rapid effect system military vehicle design decision, what the proposed package of work on risk reduction will consist of; when he expects this work to be completed; and how much it will cost.

The date by which the Utility Vehicle will enter service and how many will be ordered will be set at the time of the main investment decision. The next stage in the FRES utility vehicle programme will be the Demonstration Phase. Its duration and cost will be agreed at the time of the relevant investment decision.

Prior to the Demonstration Phase we will conduct a package of risk reduction work to further increase our confidence that the selected design is capable of delivering the required level of performance. In addition to addressing performance issues, the risk reduction work will also allow the designer to review aspects of their exploitation plans for future phases of the utility vehicle programme with regard to estimates of cost, risk and schedule. The duration and cost of this risk reduction work will be the subject of negotiations between the MOD and the vehicle designer.