SURCOUF (submarine)

The Surcouf was a one-of-a-kind submarine. It was known as “submarine cruiser” due to the installation of two 203mm naval guns. Although the concept of this type of ship was of German origin, it was the French with this submarine, and the British with the “M” class boats, who carried it out. The Surcouf‘s main mission was to destroy single-sailing merchant ships and the pursuit of enemy convoys. The French Navy designated this ship as a “corsair submarine” and although they believed that a submarine armed with powerful guns capable of sinking merchant ships from a long distance seemed the right thing to do, in the case of the Surcouf it was not.

SURCOUF gallery and more info


Información adicional

Ficha Completa
Country of origin



Cherbourg Arsenal


Submarine (conventional propulsion)

Entered service




Displacement, (full load)

Surfaced: 3,270 tonnes – Submerged: 4,250 tonnes

Dimensions (length x beam x draught)

110 x 9.00 x 9.07 meters

Power plant

Surfaced: 2 x Sulzer diesel engines, 3,800 hp each – Submerged: 2 x electric motors, 1,700 hp each

Power, (total)

7,600 hp + 3,400 hp

Shafts - Screws

2 shafts – 2 screws


Surfaced: 18 knots (33 km/h) – Submerged: 8.5 knots (15 km/h)

Diving depth, (maximum)

80 meters


Surfaced: 10,000 n. miles (18,500 km) at 10 knots – Submerged: 110 km at 5 knots


1 x Besson MB.411 seaplane


600 x 203mm shells + 14 x 550mm torpedoes + 8 x 400mm torpedoes

Main guns

2 x 203mm/50 Modèle 1924 naval guns in a barbette mounting

AA guns

2 x 37 mm anti-aircraft guns in single mounts

Machine guns

4 x 13.2mm in twin mounts


6 x 550 mm torpedo tubes + 4 x 400 mm torpedo tubes