Sea Platforms

Malaysia names and launches first Littoral Combat Ship

23 August 2017

Key Points

  • Malaysia has named and launched the country’s first Littoral Combat Ship
  • Platform will provide the Royal Malaysian Navy with all-round offensive capabilities against air, surface, and underwater threats

Malaysia's first-of-class Littoral Combat Ship, Maharaja Lela, just prior to its launch on 24 August 2017 (Royal Malaysian Navy)Malaysia's first-of-class Littoral Combat Ship, Maharaja Lela, just prior to its launch on 24 August 2017 (Royal Malaysian Navy)

Malaysia’s Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) has launched the first Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) on order for the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN).

The vessel, which has been given the pennant number 2501, was launched on 24 August at BNS’ facility in Lumut by the Queen of Perak, Zara Salim. In attendance at the launching ceremony was the Sultan of Perak Nazrin Muizzudin Shah, Malaysian defence minister Hishammuddin Hussein, and RMN Chief Admiral Kamarulzaman Ahmad Badaruddin.

Just prior to its launch, the queen also revealed that the warship will be known in service as KD Maharaja Lela , named after the 19th century anti-British Malay nationalist who was executed by the colonial government in 1877.

Maharaja Lela is the first of six LCS platforms ordered under a MYR9 billion (USD2.1 billion) contract awarded to BNS in July 2014, and was laid down in March 2016. According to specifications provided by the RMN, the 3,000-tonne LCS platform features an overall length of 111 m, an overall beam of 16 m, and a hull draught of 3.85 m.

The warship, which derives its design from French shipbuilder Naval Group’s Gowind 2500 corvette, has been incorporated with reduced radar cross section (RCS), acoustic, infrared (IR) and magnetic signatures for a stealthier disposition. It has a crew complement of 118 including 18 officers, and can accommodate one helicopter on its flight deck.

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