fighting ships of the world



COLBERT cruiser (1959)

Colbert 1960

Colbert 1969

Colbert 1980

Colbert 1990

Name No Yard No Builder Laid down Launched Comp Fate
Colbert C611   Arsenal de Brest 17/5/1954 24/3/1956 5/5/1959 stricken 5/1991


Displacement standard, t


Displacement full, t


Length, m


Breadth, m


Draught, m


No of shafts



2 sets CEM Parsons geared steam turbines, 4 Indret boilers

Power, h. p.


Max speed, kts


Fuel, t

oil 1492

Endurance, nm(kts) 4000(25)

Armour, mm

belt: 80 - 50, deck: 50


8 x 2 - 127/54 Mod 1948, 10 x 2 - 57/60 Mod 1951, helicopter deck

Sensors DRBV-20A, DRBV-22A, DRBI-10, 4x DRBC-31B, 4x DRBC-31A radars, DSBV-1 sonar, SENIT-1 CCS



Ship project history: Developed from the De Grasse, Colbert incorporated a number of modifications, including a shortened transom stern, an increase in beam, a knuckle in the hull forward, and a new system of protection. These changes appear to have improved stability, as Colbert retained her full designed armament until she was rebuilt in 1970. A reduction in installed horsepower was accompanied by the adoption of higher-pressure boilers, which contributed to a lower displacement. The funnel was moved further aft to clear the bridge structure, and a lattice mast was stepped immediately forward of it.

    Like De Grasse, Colbert was equipped as a fleet command ship, but in addition there was provision for her use as a fast transport, with accommodation for 2400 men and their equipment. The adoption of a transom stern allowed for a helicopter landing pad aft.

    Armament and fire control as completed were identical with De Grasse, although early drawings show an additional pair of 57mm mountings on the stern. Provision was made in the original design for eventual missile conversion. The large planar DRBV-20C air search radar was not ready in time and as a temporary measure, Colbert was fitted with the older 'A' model, which she carried until her 1962-63 refit.

Ship protection: Machinery was protected by 80-50mm belt and 50mm deck.

Modernizations: 1963: - DRBV-20A radar; + DRBV-20C radar

(4/1970-10/1972): - 8 x 2 - 127/54, 4 x 2 - 57/60, DRBV-22A, 2x DRBC-31B, 4x DRBC-31A radars; + 1 x 2 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 2 SAM (48 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 2), 2 x 1 - 100/55 Mod 1968, DRBV-23C, DRBV-50, 2x DRBI-51, 2x DRBC-32C radars, ARBR-10F, ARBB-31/32 ECM suites, 2x Corvus decoy RL; complement was 560.

1974: - 1 x 2 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 2 SAM (48 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 2); + 1 x 2 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 3 SAM (48 Masurca Mk 2 Mod 3)

1980: + 4 x 1 MM38 Exocet SSM (4 MM38)

Naval service: No significant events.

Colbert 1980

Ivan Gogin, 2015