First Live Fire Test For British Army's Ajax

The latest addition to the British Army's fleet, the Ajax, has successfully completed its first live firing test. Formerly known as the...

The latest addition to the British Army's fleet, the Ajax, has successfully completed its first live firing test.
Formerly known as the Scout SV, the armoured fighting vehicle is being developed by General Dynamics to replace the Scimitar, and is one of six planned variants ordered by the Ministry of Defence. It will be renamed Ajax when it comes into service.
This early live firing, at Radnor Ranges in Powys, Wales, involved testing the main 40 mm stabilised cannon and machine gun while the vehicle was static.
Throughout the test, AJAX had a huge amount of instrumentation filled to record all aspects of the firing, from recoil and blast stresses to fall of shot. 
The next test firing is planned for later this year, and once again will involve a fully instrumented vehicle and be used to gather further evidence before progressing to manned firing in early 2017. 
The Senior Requirements Manager for the AJAX Programme,  Lt Col David Cathro, said:
"This a great achievement for the programme. The challenges in getting to this point should not be underestimated and today is the result of a lot of hard work. 
"Seeing the firings today gives us confidence that the Army will receive this battle-winning and transformational capability on time and to budget."
The Ajax, which will come in six variants, will boast 360 degree thermal and visual driving cameras, laser detection ability, and numerous other new features. It'll have a top speed of 43 mph, and will be able to pull up to 92 tonnes.
Forces TV's Carla Prater visited General Dynamics' plant in Wales in September for an exclusive first look - just click below to watch.
The Ajax claims to be the first fully-digitised fighting vehicle, with all crew members in the vehicle able to share its camera capabilities.
The MoD placed a £3.5 billion order for 589 in 2014, with delivery expected to begin in 2017 and continue until 2024.
Controversy arose last year, however, after Prime Minister David Cameron claimed 1,300 jobs across the UK would be assured by the deal.
But according to the Daily Mirror, it later emerged that 40% of the work will be done by overseas firms, meaning Britain will lose £1.4bn.
A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said:
"We are assembling these vehicles in South Wales, supporting thousands of UK jobs and ensuring our servicemen and women have the very best equipment."