The army has reportedly drafted plans to scrap all of Britain’s tanks and pour more money into cyberwarfare.
Britain’s fleet of 227 Challenger 2 tanks and the 388 Warrior were branded “obsolete” last year and the cost of upgrading them has shot up, according to The Times.
The idea has reportedly been floated with senior US army members and NATO.
Chiefs have also considered shutting down the British Army’s training base in Canada, it is claimed.
A government source told the newspaper: “We know that a number of bold decisions need to be taken in order to properly protect British security and rebalance defence interests to meet the new threats we face.”
However, the option reportedly remains open to upgrade the Challenger 2 or purchase German Leopard 2 tanks.
The talks are part of the government’s defence review, which is set to end in November.
A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said: “Our commitment to NATO is unwavering, and the UK recognises that as a global military power our greatest strength remains our alliances.
“We are engaging our international allies and industry partners as we develop and shape defence’s contribution to the Integrated Review.”
The Challenger 2 is the army’s main battle tank and has been in service since 1998.
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It has a crew of four and is equipped with thermal imaging and a chain gun that can fire 4,000 rounds.
The tank was deployed in the Kovoso War in the 1990s in the former Yugoslavia.
It is currently in service with the Queen's Royal Hussars, the King's Royal Hussars and the Royal Tank Regiment.
Britain has just 227 tanks, lagging behind Argentina with 231 and Germany with 236.
Russia tops the table with 12,950, followed by the US with 6,333.
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