January 12, 2018

A BILLION DOLLARS HERE AND A BILLION DOLLARS THERE AND YOU’RE STILL ONLY TALKING TWO SMALL SHIPS: New Navy Frigate Could Cost $950M Per Hull.

Speaking at the Surface Navy Association 2018 symposium, NAVSEA’s Regan Campbell said the new class of small surface combatant would set a so-called threshold requirement for a net average cost of $950 million for the second through 20th hulls in the FFG(X) next-generation frigate program following a downselect to a single shipbuilder in 2020. The lead ship in the class is expected to cost more than the $950-million average.

In comparison, a Flight IIA Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer (DDG-51) costs about $1.8 billion to build and equip with sensors and weapon systems.

That frigate number is also above the $588-million per-hull cost of the existing Lockheed Martin Freedom-class (LCS-1) and Austal USA Independence-class (LCS-2) Littoral Combat Ships slated for the Fiscal Year 2018 budget.

That had better be one capable frigate.