WASHINGTON, Jan 15 (Reuters) - U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus on Thursday said the Navy would rename the modified Littoral Combat Ships it plans to build in coming years as “frigates,” given their enhanced capabilities.
“One of the requirements of the Small Surface Combatant Task Force was to have a ship with frigate-like capabilities. Well, if it’s like a frigate, why don’t we call it a frigate?” Mabus told the annual conference of the Surface Navy Association.
Mabus said the changed designation would apply primarily to the next 20 ships to be built, but 32 earlier Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) that have either been built or ordered would also be reclassified if and when they are retrofitted with additional weapons.
Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli