Star Trek: A Fresh Look At The New USS Enterprise

Published 6 years ago by , Updated February 10th, 2012 at 7:23 am,

new enterprise first look Star Trek: A Fresh Look At The New USS Enterprise

Star Trek fans have been VERY passionate in their opinions of the redesigned NCC-1701 (seen above). While a few people have stated they like the new design, the VAST majority disliked it (to put it mildly). When we posted the first image of the new USS Enterprise, that image received over 140 comments.

But today (thanks to we have some images looking at the redesigned ship from some different angles which may change your mind to the positive.

When the first trailer was released and we had a couple of brief glimpses of it in motion, some people (myself included) started to come around on the new design. People started saying “Maybe in motion on the big screen the ship would look better.” After all the NCC-1701D from The Next Generation is pretty hideous from a couple of angles.

Now these aren’t official images of the Enterprise – they were created by professional CGI artist Tobias Richter, the owner of The Light Works graphic studio in Germany. He’s actually done Star Trek renders in the past for The Official Star Trek Magazine (which you can see over at his site).

Tobias didn’t have any official wireframes or dimensions to go off of in the creation of these pics, he eyeballed the design from images, TV clips and trailers. He filled in the blanks with his own ideas where there was no detail available, but in the final analysis he did a heck of a job.

new enterprise1 Star Trek: A Fresh Look At The New USS Enterprise
A familiar angle on the new USS Enterprise

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Another view of the NCC-1701 we’ve seen many times

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A 3/4 rear view from above of the Enterprise

new enterprise4 Star Trek: A Fresh Look At The New USS Enterprise
3/4 rear view of the ship

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Finally, the new Enterprise approaches the USS Kelvin

The front part of the nacelles still look to big in proportion to everything else, and I still wish that they were spread a bit farther apart. But having said that, I must admit the ship is growing on me somewhat. I’m betting they’ve shot it from angles that highlight its best qualities in the upcoming Star Trek reboot.

For even more images and much higher res versions you can set as your computer desktop, head over to To see more of Tobias Richter work head over to The Light Works.

So based on these new images, what do you think? Do you still hate the redesigned Enterprise or is it looking better to you?

Star Trek opens on May 8, 2009.

TAGS: Star trek
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  1. Finally this ship is beginning to look like an Enterprise. Great visual pics.

  2. I love the second to last shot. Simply fantastic.

  3. Are there bigger versions of the pics?

  4. Looks good to me..I guess they had to tinker with the nacelles because there was not much they could do with the saucer portion of the Enterprise without dramatically changing the ship’s look..Move the nacelles closer together and voila a “new” Enterprise design..Keeps the Trekkers/Trekkies and fanboys/fangirls happy and gives a somewhat updated look to the ship without seeming futuristic beyond TNG or Voyager..

  5. A little better, but the dish is strange.
    It looks like … pursed lips. There’s no other way to describe it.

    Thus far … still a “no” for the new design. Sorry.

  6. I really don’t see the pursed lips design you are referring to..I even looked at it upside down ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Great work, design still quite fugly

  8. @Ash Ali

    At the bottom of the post I mention (and include a link) that you can head over to for larger versions and a couple more I don’t show above.


  9. I’m learning to like the new Enterprise! I am really looking forward to this movie!

  10. Actually it’s not THAT fugly. It actually looks “tougher” than the early Enterprises (short of the Enterprise E).

    If you flip the first picture upside down and observe the design (especially the Engineering Section and the nacelles), it would look almost Romulan..

    I hope this Enterprise kicks ass and loves to lob volleys of torpedoes at anything that looks at it funny, just like the one in Star Wreck.

    The USS Kelvin, however, looks crap. I wonder how they’re gonna explain away the nacelle positions in relation to warp field geometry..

  11. @greenknight

    What I mean is that the dish is placed a bit too far in front of the bottom section of the ship. It stands out too much.
    And since it’s round-shaped, it reminds me of pursed lips ready to kiss.

    Yes, it’s just me, but my point is that the dish makes it look awkward.
    The rest is almost fine, but the warp narcelles are too bulky and too much closer together.

    If you’d change everything I criticized you’d end up with the 1701-A … so … what do I know?

    On a side-note, kudos for all the work that Tobias put into that 3D model, but I doubt it’s more than 80% accurate.
    If we’re lucky that’s a bad thing … if you know what I mean.

  12. @ Jae Senn

    I really don’t think Abrams vision went as far as to consider nacelle positions in relation to warp field geometry…he was hired IMO to revitalize this franchise for the masses and not the core niche of this series’ fans over the last 40 years..In other words JJ make things go boom-boom..

  13. @ Jae Senn

    “The USS Kelvin, however, looks crap. I wonder how theyโ€™re gonna explain away the nacelle positions in relation to warp field geometry..”

    Exactly what I thought.
    They won’t, obviously. At all.
    Not that I care that much about the tech behind Trek, but the design simply sucks, there’s no way around it.

  14. So glad you guys posted this. This is probably as close as we’re going to get to actual film footage.

    I was looking at these earlier in the day and was hoping to give my opinion.

    First, I gotta tip my hat to Tobias. He did a really nice job with these. I hope these are close to accurate. They look different from the original, (duh), but in a lot of those shots, it looks just like the Enterprise we know. I like how it looks.

  15. @ Vic

    Thanks! There are some really beautiful shots of the Enterprise.

  16. Regarding the Kelvin… guys, if you pick up a copy of the original Star Trek Technical manual from many years ago you will find in their a starship with the same nacelle configuration as the Kelvin. :-)


  17. I thought the Kelvin prdeated the new Enterprise.
    How could the new ship be headed TOWARD her?
    Hmm Time Travel?
    Just speculating.

  18. Stupid Me.
    these are not official images.
    I just went straight for the pictures!
    Very well done though.

  19. I like it! Tobias has done a stellar job of putting finishing touches on unknown portions of the ship. Thank you Tobias. :)

    I especially like the details in various places. Though it’s not very TOS, it gives the ship a functional look that some of those bits would spring to life and perform a function given the need. I guess the question I face is are they Tobias’ work or will they show up in the movie?

    Everyone has a strong opinion about the look of the new design. I remember being a little dismayed by the changes, but overall liking the look. My point is that no one can mistake what that ship is. It’s the Enterprise! No other design in pop culture comes close to it! It’s unmistakable! I, for one, can not wait to see Her in action. (And the movie should be good too!)

    About the nacelle configuration on the Kelvin: In the “Star Fleet Technical Manual” the Scout/ Destroyer has a single nacelle positioned at the bottom of the dorsal (where the secondary hull on the Enterprise is) with the support pylon integrated into the rear of the dorsal. There was no secondary hull above the primary in that design either. However, the warp nacelle was further from the saucer in the tech manual.

    Thanks for the great pics, Vic. My withdrawals were getting pretty ugly, and I think the family was ready to lock me in the basement until May! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  20. wow those pictures are gorgeous, truly stunning. Whoever did these have serious skills :)


  22. It looks a little better. The nacelles are still too big and it should be a for-runner to the TOS Enterprise not the TMP Enterprise.

  23. Vic I have TNG version of that manual..I bought it in 1991…is it the same tech guide you are referring to with a brown cover with the Enterprise outlined in white??

  24. No, I have that version but the one I’m referring to is for the original series. It features ships, uniforms, gear and a cross section of a starbase. It also has the founding documents of the Federation.

    VERY geeky and VERY cool. :-)


  25. I think it’s funny that’s all these supposed Star Trek fans have overlooked the fact that the Enterprise of the new movie is a perfect amalgamation of 24th century (Next Gen) tech and classic Kirk era design. In light of the comments from the unidentified artist of the Countdown comic series at Wondercon that the Next Gen crew or at least its period would be making a cameo in the first four mins. of the new movie, facts seem blatantly obvious:
    When Nero comes back from the late 24th century, he brings back technology that rapidly advances the capabilities of the 23rd century Federation. Since he ends up on Rura Penthe some point in the movie, he and/or his ship must be captured soon after it destroys the Kelvin, at which point the ship is thoroughly analyzed and reverse-engineered to give the Federation a leg up in tactical and practical abilities. Hell, they could even explain this around the Prime Directive by claiming or legitimately not knowing it was from the future, just recognizing it as current Romulan offensive power and needing a way to counter it.
    My rationale for these findings are the organic lines of the new Enterprise. Only with Ambassador class and especially later Galaxy class (Enterprise-D) did we see obviously fluid and smooth lines. This is clearly evident in the neck structure from the engineering to primary hull and the fatter, more sloping design of the nacelles from the bussard collectors back. It makes sense that after analyzing Nero’s ship, computers, etc. did the Federation discover that the blending curves would better enhance the warp field geometry and ship performance, in addition to the numerous enhanced features and appearance of the so-called “I-Bridge” and etc. I wouldn’t say I’d be very surprised if this wasn’t the case since Abrams and the writers are very talented storytellers, but I do posit it as a logical and obviously noteworthy possibility.

  26. Hey Tysteious. Did you just spoil the movie?! Or is it your guess on what the plot will be? I really hope it’s the latter because even though I stopped reading your message half-way through, I still read too much. I really, REALLY hate spoilers!

  27. Nope, pure speculation on my part, but sounds neat huh? ha ha ha

  28. Ok. Phew! Thanks Tysteious. I would think Kirk being on Rura Penthe would be kinda cool. He started his carrer there and ended it there. lol That certainly could explain the picture of him climbing out of an escape pod.

  29. At first, I was thinking that was too ugly (it made me think of the ent-D too, that from some angles it was a bit strange) but now, with new images, it’s growing on me too..I’m beginning to like the new design..:) I’m more happy now, it was kind of anoying..with only a few photos here and there in the same angle..and for me ..I have to say it: the only enterprise it’s the original refit (or A, doesn’t matter) it’s the best. …now let’s hope the movie and the actors do a good job :)

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