Assuming for a moment this is the new designation of the 'new' design of five ships following the Type 26 production run.
The first question is, since this is a cost saving measure in cutting the Type 26 production run down. What is the likely budget for this force?
Considering the relatively low risk/costs associated with the Type 26, what can be done to reduce costs further?
Logic suggests the loss of high specification ASW capabilities. But is this enough?
The GT could be cut, and a all diesel plant used, CODAD or CODOD.
It's hard to envision the logic of cutting the Sea Ceptor (FLAADS-N) system. Unless moving to SeaRAM.
It's also hard to grasp what real savings are offered by reducing the hanger or helicopter facilities generally. Helicopters are just too useful to cut.
But it is arguable that the big gun up front is a expense that needs good justification. Why not a cheaper system?
Perhaps a Oto 76mm for instance? Massed produced and quite capable, it also reduces the footprint on the ship's design.
Or...even go down to LCS level here and go for the Bofors 57mm....?
Or...radical I know, but drop the gun entirely, leaving any gun type tasks to missiles. Silo's can always be left empty on some missions, if it saves money.
Mk41 VLS is very open to question. If Sea Ceptor is using CAMM silo's, then any 'extra' goodies should be aimed at integration to this. That could cut purchase and running costs, deferring expense to the matter of future integration of weapons to the silo system.
A knock on effect there, would be to share with the Army such effort to gain Brimstone, and future SPEAR solutions integrated to the CAMM silo system. Ideally adding the successor to GMLRS (such ejection system could cut down location revealing on scorch marks), using CAMM-ER silo's.
Certainly Brimstone has proven itself in trials against fast attack craft, and I would expect SPEAR to offer the same at greater ranges.
CAMM Length 3.2m, ER 4m. Cannister for ER being 4.4m. Cannister can take a diameter of 166mm, or 190mm for ER version.
Brimstone Length 1.8m, diameter 178mm.
SPEAR Length 1.8m, the addition of a booster is thus quite do-able within the shorter 3.2m length. Diameter of 180mm.
GMLR rocket. Length of 3.94m, diameter of 227mm...maybe too large?
The Astros 2020 will also be equipped with a 180 mm GPS-guided rocket called the SS-AV-40 with a range of 40 km (25 mi).
Think Defence suggest reversing this thing and building a force of five ASW focused ships, leaving the eight Type 26's for the GP role......