- The Mackensen class was the last class of battlecruisers to be built by Germany in World War I. The design initially called for seven ships, but three of them were redesigned as the Ersatz Yorck class. Of the four ships of the Mackensen class, Mackensen, Graf Spee, and Prinz Eitel Friedrich were launched, and Fürst Bismarck was not – but none were completed, after wartime shipbuilding priorities were redirected towards U-boats – and the ships were broken up in the early 1920s. The lead ship of the class was named for August von Mackensen, a prominent military commander during the war. In response to the Mackensen-class ships, the British Royal Navy laid down the Admiral-class battlecruisers, all but one of which would eventually be cancelled; the sole survivor, HMS Hood, was completed after the end of the war.
- The design of the Mackensens was a much improved version of the previous Derfflinger class. The most significant improvement was a new, more powerful 35 cm (14 in) gun, compared to the 30.5 cm (12.0 in) gun of the earlier ships. The Mackensen-class ships also featured more powerful engines that gave the ships a higher top speed and a significantly higher cruising range. The Mackensen design provided the basis for the subsequent Ersatz Yorck class, armed with 38 cm (15 in) main-battery guns, after the Battle of Jutland in 1916 made the need for the larger guns clear.
The Mackensen class was the last class of battlecruisers
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