A former senior defense official told the Times on Tuesday that Ajax “is fine if you are operating against incompetent enemies, but if you are up against a peer enemy this thing is useless, it’s a death trap.”
ritain signed a deal with US arms giant General Dynamics for nearly 600 Ajax mini-tanks in 2014 with the first deliveries expected in 2017 and the full order in the UK by 2024.
Issues were first reported during overseas trials in 2016, with one official who recently left the Ministry of Defence (MoD) telling the paper “there are quite a few reasons why the program has been delayed.”
He said a device attached to the turret to feed rounds into an attached weapon “failed” when “subject to vibration.”
Arms firms and the MoD have rallied around the project.
A spokesperson for BAE Systems claimed “deliveries were ahead of schedule,” while a Lockheed spokesperson insisted “early indications point to a component failure and not a design flaw.”