The U.S. Navy announced Friday that U.S. defense giant Lockheed Martin was awarded a $1.96 billion contract to build four Multi-Mission Surface Combatant (MMSC) for Saudi Arabia. The MMSC is based on the freedom variant of the Navy Littoral Combat Ship class, and is being procured by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) under the auspices of the Navy’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. The detail design and construction of four Multi Mission Surface Combatant ships is part of the Foreign Military Sales agreement between the U.S. and the KSA. This sale contributes to the foreign policy and national security of the U.S. by helping to improve the security of a strategic regional partner.
The MMSC which are slated to be built at Fincantieri’s Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin. The ships takes the proven capabilities of the U.S. Littoral Combat Ship and the inherent flexibility of the Freedom-variant hull to meet the unique maritime requirements of international navies. It will be based on the Freedom-variant Littoral Combat Ship’s 118 meter hull and it will utilize the same combined diesel and gas propulsion system. The MMSC is a lethal and highly maneuverable multi-mission surface combatant capable of littoral and open ocean operation Paired with world’s most advanced maritime helicopter, the MH-60R SEAHAWK, the MMSC will have a robust anti-submarine mission capability that is fully interoperable with the U.S. Navy and its coalition partners.
The MMSC utilizes the COMBATSS-21 Combat Management System, built from the Aegis Combat System Software library. The MMSC integrated combat system solution leverages the domestic LCS integration of the 57mm Mk110 deck gun and SeaRAM, and expands multi-mission capability through integration of Over-The-Horizon surface-to-surface missiles, port and starboard 20 mm remote guns, a new fire control radar and a forward centerline 8 cell MK 41 Vertical Launch System equipped with RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles. The MMSC is also equipped with the AN/SLQ-25 Torpedo Defense system. The Multi-Mission Surface Combatant has a range of 5,000 nautical miles and can reach speeds in excess of 30 knots.
The awarded contract includes associated cost-plus-fixed-fee class design and related material and firm-fixed-price integrated data environment. Work will be performed in Marinette, Wisconsin (50%); Washington, District of Columbia (17%); Baltimore, Maryland (9%); Moorestown, New Jersey (7%); Clearwater, Florida (2%); Beloit, Wisconsin (1%); Salt Lake City, Utah (1%); Pascagoula, Mississippi (1%); Fitchburg, Massachusetts (1%); Hampton, Virginia (1%); areas outside the U.S. (8%); and other areas in the U.S. (2%), and is expected to be complete by June 2026. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, District of Columbia, is the contracting activity.