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Sauro class

Patrol submarine

Sauro class submarine

The Sauro class submarines are intended for anti-shipping tasks

Entered service 1979
Crew 45 men
Diving depth (operational) 250 m
Diving depth (maximum) 410 m
Dimensions and displacement
Length 63.9 m
Beam 6.8 m
Draught 5.7 m
Surfaced displacement 1 456 tons
Submerged displacement 1 631 tons
Propulsion and speed
Surfaced speed 12 knots
Submerged speed 20 knots
Diesel engines 3 x 3 210 hp
Electric motors 1 x 3 650 hp
Torpedoes 6 x 533-mm bow tubes for 12 A184  torpedoes
Mines 24 ground mines in place of the torpedoes


   During the early 1970s it became clear to the Italian navy that a new submarine type was required for defense against amphibious landings and for ASW and anti-shipping tasks in the local area. The result was the Italcantieri design for the Sauro class, whose first two units were the Nazario Sauro and Carlo Fecio di Cossato, which entered service in 1980 and 1979 respectively following major problems with their batteries.

   A further two units, the Leonardo da Vinci and the Guglielmo Marconi were then for commissioning in 1981 and 1982. The class has a single pressure hull with external ballast tanks at the bow and stern, and a buoyancy tank in the sail. the pressure hull is made from the US-developed HY-80 steel, which provides a deeper diving depth than was possible with the preceding Enrico Toti class boats. The main armament is the A184 wire-guided dual-role torpedo. The Sauro and Marconi were deleted in 2001 and 2002 respectively.

   In March 1983 and July 1988 two additional pairs of boats were ordered to the Improved Sauro class design, and these were delivered in 1988-89 and 1994-95 by Fincantieri as the Salvatore Pelosi, Giuliano Prini, Primo Longobardo and Gianfranco Gazzana Priaroggia. The first pair have displacements of 1 476 tons surfaced and 1 662 tons dived with a length of 64.4 m (211 ft 3 in), and the second pair have displacements of 1 653 tons surfaced and 1 862 tons dived with a length of 66.4 m (217 ft 10 in). Uprated machinery provides surfaced and dived speeds of 11 and 19 kts respectively.


Name Laid down Launched Commissioned Status
Nazario Sauro (S518) 1974 1976 1980


Carlo Fecia di Cossato (S519) 1975 1977 1980 decommissioned
Leonardo da Vinci (S520) 1978 1979 1981

in reserve

Guglielmo  Marconi (S521) 1979 1980 1982





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