The NATO alliance countries had initially had a lead on the Soviet Bloc in design and provision of armoured personnel carriers. This lead had disappeared in the late 1960s with the introduction of vehicles such as the BMP-1, which had refined the concept into a mechanised combat vehicle, not just a ‘battle taxi’ but a vehicle which was armed and could fight as well as transport.

The GKN-built Warrior is the first purpose built vehicle of this type supplied to the British Army and has been successful in this role in both Gulf Wars as well as deployment in Bosnia. Warrior was specifically designed to be up to keeping pace with both types of Challenger main battle tanks in a combat environment and has fulfilled the ambition of its designers in this role. As an expensive vehicle, its use has mainly been restricted to front line units, subsidiary units still being equipped with updated versions of the FV432. This state of affairs will probably continue to a lesser extent in the future although some older vehicles may ‘percolate’ down through the system.

Various specialised recovery versions of Warrior are in service as well as Artillery Observation Vehicle and Battery Command Vehicle variants. Additional armour and other modifications were provided during the two Gulf War operations and these remain available as a future option.

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