German Navy - Deutsche Marine

Type 103 (103A) Luetjens class Destroyer


type 103a Luetjens Lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy moelders mölders rommel








in service




D 185 FGS Luetjens (Lütjens)


Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA

scrapped 2012 in Turkey


D 186 FGS Moelders (Mölders)


Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA

museum ship in Wilhelmshafen


D 187 FGS Rommel


Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA

cannibalized, scrapped 2004 in Turkey




The Type 103 Luetjens class was the last class of destroyers in service with the German Navy. Basically the ships were Charles F. Adams-class guided missile destroyers but with some modifications to meet German requirements:

Communication systems according to German standards. The Luetjens class had more aerials and a second mast mounted on the aft funnel, the large air surveillance radar was positioned further aft (above the funnel).

Different funnel design. This was necessary because of the new antennas and radar location. On the Luetjens the exhaust gases were emitted sideways with two pipes on the port and starboard side of each funnel.

New location of the sonar array: The Luetjens had its sonar dome located in a bulge directed forward in the bow and not under the bow to reduce the ship's draft.

Better crew accommodations.

The Luetjens class was upgraded to Type 103A in the 1970s with new digital fire-control computers and better missiles (RIM-66 Standard Missile) for the old RIM-24 Tartar missile system. The boilers were also converted to burn lighter oil for logistical reasons instead of the heavy fuel oil that needs to be preheated.

A second major refit began in the 1980s, with new fire control computers and radar for the guns.

In the 1990s, the ships in the class each received two RAM launchers and Chaff launchers.

With the decommissioning of Luetjens (D185) on December 18, 2003 the age of steam ended for the German Navy. Moelders (D186) became a Museum Ship at the German Navy Museum in Wilhelmshaven.







4720 tons (full load)



133,2 meters



14,3 meters



6,1 meters



32 knots (60 km/h)



2 gas turbines / 4 boilers (70000 shp) / 2 shafts / 2 propellers



4500 NM (8300 km) at 20 knots (37 km/h)






1 x Mk-13 single-arm missile launcher (40 missiles)

      for a mix of
      RIM-24 Tartar SAM (earlier)

      RIM-66 Standard Missile SM-1MR SAM (later)
      RGM-84 Harpoon SSM


2 x Mk-42 5”/54 caliber gun (127mm)

1 x Mk-16 octuple launcher for RUR-5 ASROC anti-submarine rockets

2 x Mk-32 triple-torpedo-tubes for Mk-46 and/or DM4A1 torpedoes


2 x Rheinmetall RH202 20mm autocannons


2 x Mk-49 missile launching system for RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missiles (RAM) (added in the 1990’s)







type 103 lutjens class guided missile destroyer german navy

Type 103 Luetjens class DDG (as built)



type 103a lutjens class guided missile destroyer german navy deutsche marine

Type 103A Luetjens class DDG with 2 Mk-49 RAM launcher



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