This class was planned to replace the earlier Isuzu-class and possess both ASW capability as the successor of the Chikugo-class and ASuW capability as the successor of the Yubari-class, but there are many enhancements as follows:
This class is the first combatant ship of the JMSDF with stealth technology. Their superstructure has traditional vertical surfaces, but their hulls are angled to reduce their radar cross section.
This is the first destroyer escort class with the Naval Tactical Data System and OYQ-7 combat direction system. It is also the first destroyer escort class which has ECM capability with the OLT-3 jammer.
Modified weapon systems.
The Short Range Air Defense system comprises the OPS-14 air-search radar, the OPS-28 surface search and target acquisition radar, one Otobreda 76 mm rapid-firing gun controlled by the FCS-2 fire-control system and Phalanx CIWS. The OPS-14 is the Japanese equivalent of the American AN/SPS-49 radar, and the OPS-28 is the equivalent of the American TAS Mk.23. Phalanx CIWS has given the ships an improved self-defence capability against anti-ship missiles. Mk.31 RAM GMWS Point Defense Missile System was planned, but it is not installed yet.
The ASW system comprises an OQS-8 hull-sonar (Japanese equivalent of the American DE-1167), ASROC anti-submarine rocket from the Type 74 octuple launcher (Japanese license-built version of the American Mark 16 GMLS) and lightweight ASW torpedoes from two HOS-301 triple 324 mm (12.8 in) torpedo tubes. A Tactical Towed-Array Sonar System was planned but it is not installed yet.
The JMSDF intended to build eleven ships of this class, but finally, only six were built because Hatsuyuki-classdestroyers started deploying in distinct forces. All six vessels of the class are named after World War II cruisers.