MBDA to Supply Exocet Missiles for French Frigates

European defense company MBDA has secured a contract to deliver Exocet anti-ship missiles for the French Navy’s frigates.

The deal stipulates the 40 Block 3C (MM40 B3C) surface-to-surface variants of the weapon that will be fitted on multi-mission, air defense, and defense and intervention frigates.

MM40 B3C is the latest iteration of the Exocet product line. It is capable of subsonic operations in maritime, ground, and aerial warfare.

Exocet MM40 B3 Firing
Exocet missile firing. Photo: Michel Hans/MBDA

The missile can neutralize targets 200 kilometers (124 miles) away at approximately 620 knots (713 miles/1,148 kilometers per hour).

It is equipped with active radio frequency seeker technology, which increases its hit chance against moving targets and makes it operable in all weather conditions.

The weapon incorporates an optimized airframe for complex maneuvers and low observability.

MM40 B3C deploys through a single rocket booster and turbojet engine. Its warhead has improved pre-fragmented and high-explosive effects as well as adaptive search patterns.

Proving Effectiveness

The procurement followed the MM40 B3C’s live-fire test from an Alsace-class multi-mission frigate in September 2023.

Held in Île du Levant, the trial demonstrated the missile’s functionality for the French Navy before future acquisition and employment.

“It proves the new capabilities of the missile’s latest generation, whose major developments keep it at the forefront in a high-intensity context,” MBDA CEO Eric Béranger remarked during the event.

“Exocet is a real symbol for MBDA, and this success is further proof of the skill and technical excellence of MBDA’s people.”

Recent Exocet Projects

Indonesia signed a contract in March for additional Exocets to replenish the government’s missile stockpile.

In 2022, Greece selected MBDA to provide the Hellenic Navy and Air Force with Exocets on top of Aster, Scalp, and Mica missiles.

One year earlier, the company demonstrated the Exocet’s capability for the Peruvian Navy during a multinational military exercise in Salinas.

Related Articles

Back to top button