The US Navy has exercised an option with Italian shipbuilding company Fincantieri to build the third Constellation-class frigate USS Chesapeake (FFG-64).
As informed, Fincantieri’s US subsidiary Marinette Marine (FMM) will be in charge of the construction of the vessel.
The announcement follows last month’s successful design review of the first-in-class USS Constellation (FFG-62), which is nearing the start of construction. The value of the contract is $536 million.
The Constellation program was awarded to FMM in 2020, through a contract for the lead frigate and
9 option ships.
The contract, including post-delivery availability support and crew training, has a cumulative value of $5.5 billion.
Under the same program, the US Navy plans to build 10 additional vessels, for a total of 20 units.
Fincantieri’s proposal is based on the FREMM frigate platform, the backbone of a 10-unit program for the Italian Navy which the firm is currently completing.
Furthermore, the upgrade of Fincantieri US shipyards is nearly completed, enabling the subsidiary to build two frigates each year. FMM plans to build two ships per year after the ship design is stabilized. The lead ship is scheduled for delivery in 2026 and the second vessel in 2027.
FMM is also committed to the US Navy’s littoral combat ship program and the multi-mission surface combatants (MMSC) program for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as part of the US Foreign Military Sales plan.