As the German Navy had a shortage of capital ships compared with the Royal Navy, they tended to prefer an offensive role for their light forces. The torpedo was considered the main weapon, intended to sink capital ships, and small craft with only light artillery armament were preferred for that role. To counter that, Britain relied on similar craft with more artillery and less torpedoes in order to keep attacking torpedo boats in check, called (torpedo boat) destroyers - in German, that would be Zerstörer.
At the beginning of the war, the German Navy became interested in the concept, as they would now have need of a light vessel with a stronger emphasis on artillery, and ordered seven craft of the kind. As there was no design at hand right then, the Blohm & Voss shipyards came up with a design of recently built Russian destroyers (Novik type), and adapted them for German purposes. In fact, much of the material - primarily machinery - used to build them was initially intended for destroyers of the same kind which were laid down on Russian shipyards, but which was not delivered any more due to the war. To mark the difference in the taken approach, these boats were not classified as torpedo boats, but as Torpedobootzerstörer, analogue to the British nomenclature. The admiralty was pleased by the results, and more destroyers were ordered, but none of them are in service yet. Initially, the ships were fitted with 8,8cm guns only, but were recently upgraded to the new 10,5cm guns. Like the more recent types of torpedo boats, these ships feature two bow torpedo tubes.

Ship data

Relative combat value: 541

Basic damage control capacity: 105%


Displacement: 1374 tons

Length: 98 m

Width: 9 m

Draught: 3 m

Standard crew: 114


Maximum speed (undamaged): 36 knots

Endurance: 6486 km

Coal capacity: 527 tons

Armour protection

Conning tower armour: 0

Hull armour: 0

Main belt armour: 0

Deck armour: 0

Best armour type: None


4 x 10,5cm Tbts K L/45, centrally controlled. Ammo: 320 rounds

2 x 50cm G7 Torpedoes, centrally controlled. Ammo: 2 torpedoes

4 x 50cm G7 Torpedoes, centrally controlled. Ammo: 4 torpedoes

24 mines

Ships in class

  • B97
  • B98
  • V99 (†,lost in the Baltic in August 1915)
  • V100
  • B109
  • B110
  • B111
  • B112