The Federation Class Dreadnought was initially conceived prior to
the Four Years as a variant of the Heston class heavy cruiser (which
was itself a Military role variant of the Constitution). The design
was shelved as the new dilithium energised engines were not yet
available to power such a large vessel. After the war the design was
modified to take account of the lessons of the War and put into
production using the new FWF-1 engine. The class was refitted in
2274, and was the most powerful Starfleet vessel until the
introduction of the Excelsior class some twenty years later.
Ship Source: Starfleet Technical Manual
Image Source: Harry Doddema at Titan
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