Swiftships Wins Another $59 Million For Five More LCUs

The Navy awarded Swiftships LLC a $59 million modification exercising an option to build another five Landing Craft Utility (LCU) 1700-class vessels.

This award covers LCUs 1707 through 1711. Work will occur at the company’s facility in Morgan City, La. and is expected to be finished by November 2023. 

A Landing Craft Utility (LCU) assigned to the Surf Riders of Assault Craft Unit One (ACU-1) heads to the beach with embarked U.S. Marines from 3rd Marine Regiment during amphibious assault training in support of exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2004. (Photo: U.S. Navy)

The Navy is buying LCS 1700-class boats to continue replacing the older set of 32 LCU 1610-class amphibious landing craft on a one-to-one basis.

Last year, the Navy announced a previous modification under this contract awarding Swiftships $50 million for four boats (Defense Daily, April 3, 2020).

At that time, the contract announcement said the LCU 1700s will recapitalize the 1610-class as a similarly rugged steel craft with a design life of 30 years. The Pentagon said the 1700-class boats are highly reliable and fuel efficient to complement capabilities of the faster air cushion landing craft which have a shorter range and smaller payload.

The LCU-1700s are designed to be 139-feet long, reach speeds of 11 knots, have a range of 1,200 nautical miles, and a crew of 13. It can carry up to two M1A1 tanks, 350 combat troops or 170 short tons of cargo. The boats have a roll on-roll off configuration with bow and stern ramps and are designed to be transported in the well decks of Navy amphibious warfare ships.