Ever since Disney relaunched the Star Wars movies, fans have been kept pretty busy with the new characters and storylines. As we're gearing up for Episode VIII, a potential working title has already been leaked and everyone's been wondering about Finn's origins — actually, here's everything we know so far about the upcoming sequel.
But that doesn't mean Star Wars nostalgia will ever get old: Don't you feel like you discover something new every time you rewatch the Lucas Star Wars trilogies? (Alright, maybe not the prequels.) Among the inexhaustible topics are the spaceships, which have been upgraded throughout the story, and it's quite hard to decide which ones deserve a spot in the pantheon of the coolest Star Wars spaceships.
Nevertheless, here's a list including Star Wars imperial ships and Star Wars rebel ships from the canon, and if you don't agree with these being the best Star Wars spaceships, be sure to let me know your favorites in the comments below!
10. Speeder Bike
This is less of a spaceship than a terrestrial vehicle, but it flies and it's awesome, so I've decided to include it in this list of the top 10 coolest Star Wars spaceships. Having made its first movie appearance in Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi, the speeder bike, in case its name didn't tip you off, is capable of reaching extreme speeds — which is why it requires a certain agility to manoeuver.
There are civilian versions as well as military ones: The Jedi principally used the Undicur, while the Galactic Empire favored the 614-AvA until they replaced it with the 74-Z.
9. Super Star Destroyer
Who looks at this picture and doesn't let out an admiring "woah"? The name of the Super Star Destroyer can be used for a whole range of Star Wars spaceships, those that qualify being basically larger than Star Destroyers. While Star Destroyers are ships packing enough power to destroy a star system, they could also just be warships, and their aggressive style is obviously characteristic of the Imperial fleet.
Now, there have been several Super Star Destroyers, but the most famous one has got to be Darth Vader's Executor, his personal flagship and naturally one of the most powerful ships built for the Empire. With 5,000 turbolasers and ion cannons, its length reached no less than 19,000 meters — an overwhelming size compared to Han Solo's Millenium Falcon, which it attempted to chase after the Battle of Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back.
Vader's Executor was eventually destroyed when a Rebel ship crashed into its command tower, causing it to collide with the Death Star, but the ship's manufacturer, Kuat Drive Yards, should definitively be proud of their creation.
Some would prefer the A-Wing to have made it on the list of the coolest spaceships in Star Wars, but the Y-Wing starfighter's older age doesn't make it any less iconic. Sure, they're not always the most reliable ships, but Y-Wings were very often used by the Rebel Alliance Starfighter Corps during the Clone Wars and the Galactic Civil War. They were present in the attacks on both Death Stars!
With room for one pilot and one gunner, the 23.4-meter long ship includes two engines and can reach an atmospheric speed of 1000 kilometers per hour. The first model had a little turret for the gunner, but later models stopped including the turret. Behind the scenes, it's a ship that was designed by Industrial Light & Magic, George Lucas's visual effects company that is also responsible for other iconic fighters such as the TIE.
7. T-16 Skyhopper
Granted, we see less of the T-16 Skyhopper in the movies than the other lucky 10 in this list of the coolest Star Wars spaceships. But it's one that Luke Skywalker must be particularly attached to: Its first appearance was in Episode IV — A New Hope, and it was used by Luke while he was still on Tattooine.
This type of airspeeder is capable of reaching high speeds, up to 1,200 kilometers per hour, while its maneuverability made it quite popular. Its tri-wing design also makes it very recognizable. Luke owned one that he loved to use "to bull's-eye womp rats," as he said, but he damaged it in Beggar's Canyon — which is why we saw him playing with a model.
It's also interesting to note that the controls on a T-16 skyhopper are not so different from a T-65 X-Wing, which is why Luke's flying knowledge came in handy in the Battle of Yavin, when the Rebels attacked the Death Star.
6. Naboo N-1 Starfighter
The Naboo starfighter's design distinguishes it from the rest of the vehicles on this list of the coolest spaceships in Star Wars. And for good reason: This starfighter represents Naboo's royalty, with the chromium applied onto the outer shell of the twin J-type engines giving it a sparkly finish.
But the ship's representative functions don't make it any less efficient. With a length of 11 meters, it can reach a speed of 1,100 kilometers per hour and is equipped with 2 blaster cannons and 2 proton torpedo launchers. It's also got a great autopilot function.
It was used as well in battle as for transportation and celebration, from the battle against the Trade Federation's Saak'ak, to Senator Padmé Amidala's trip to Coruscant and Leia Organa's attack of the satellites that the Empire was using to impact the weather, as part of a plan to destroy Naboo.
5. Slave I
If you exclude the Empire's own fleet, the Slave I has got to be one of the most feared ships in the galaxy. It was first owned by the infamous bounty hunter Jango Fett, who loaded the ship with weapons, and flew it in a fight against Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Naturally, it was Boba Fett who inherited the ship upon Jango's death, although the deadly hunter had to wait quite a bit to be able to get his hands on it. After it was repaired by Hondo Ohnaka, Fett finally used it during the Galactic Civil War to bring a frozen Han Solo to Jabba the Hutt.
A modified Firespray-31-class patrol, the Slave I packs rotating blaster cannons, laser cannons, proton torpedo tubes, ion cannons, concussion missile launchers, a tractor beam projector and seismic charges within its 21.5 meters, but it's only got two seats. With so many weapons already on board, too many passengers would probably prevent it from reaching its top speed of 1,000 kilometers per hour anyway.
4. Jedi Starfighter
While "Jedi Starfighter" pretty much indicates a starfighter piloted by a Jedi, the Jedi of the second trilogy used three: the Delta-7 Aethersprite-class light interceptors, the Delta-7B Aethersprite-class interceptors, and the Eta-2 Actis-class. Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi were at the commands of the yellow ship above during the Battle of Coruscant, while the Delta-7 (below) were mostly used earlier on during the golden age of the Republic.
The Eta-2 is slightly smaller than the Delta-7 and 7B, with a length of 5.5 meters instead of 8, but that means it's capable of reaching higher speeds: 1,500 kilometers per hour thanks to twin ion engines for the Eta-2, versus 1,260 kilometers per hour maximum for the Delta-7. Interestingly, the latter doesn't feature a built-in hyperdrive.
The Delta-7s were specifically created for the Jedi, and the Eta-2 could be considered as the upgrade made necessary by the Clone Wars.
3. Millennium Falcon
We've reached the podium of the coolest Star Wars spaceships, and from here on out it's pretty much a question of personal preference. While it's not necessarily a groundbreaking piece of technology, the Millennium Falcon carries such emotional value in the eyes of our favorite space smuggler(s) that it had to be in the top 3. As Lando Calrissian (who we've recently spotted again in a LEGO Star Wars short film) himself would say,
"You know, that ship's saved my life quite a few times. She's the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy!"
Technically, Han Solo and Chewbacca's home is a Corellian YT-1300 light freighter, with a length of almost 35 meters and a maximum speed of 1,050 kilometers per hour — but it was clearly not so fast before its owners not so legally messed with the equipment. That's the beauty of the Millennium Falcon: it looks so dusty from the outside that no one would suspect the amount of features it packs on the inside, from its incredible hyperdrive engine to sensor-proof smuggling compartments that allowed Leia to escape the attention of Imperial stormtroopers.
The history of the Millennium Falcon, who was won by Han Solo from Calrissian thanks to a lucky game of sabacc, would require a dedicated article, but let's just remember that time Rey called it a piece of garbage in The Force Awakens.
2. TIE Fighter
The TIE fighter, the standard model being the TIE/LN starfighter, is one of the most abundant Imperial starfighters. It was later upgraded to several types of models such as the TIE bomber and the TIE interceptor, but it's this version that is really the iconic ship of the Empire. The ear-piercing roar of the TIE fighter has got to be one of the most recognizable sounds in the galaxy.
The incredible speed and adjustment facility of the TIE fighter can be attributed to its twin ion engines, whose power is complemented by the two wings' solar panels. Add to that two laser cannons and a proton torpedo launcher, and you've got one hell of a ship. Of all the Star Wars imperial ships, it's also probably the one whose commands are the easiest to learn. With room for a single pilot, it was primarily designed for dogfighting, but unlike most fighters, it could also hover.
While George Lucas named it TIE because it resembles a bow tie, the best bit of trivia about the TIE fighter is that its roar was reportedly created in sound design by combining the sound of an elephant with that of a car driving on wet pavement.
Who didn't get chills all over when they saw the X-Wings again in the trailer for The Force Awakens? I mean, the charisma of Poe Dameron also helps contribute to the awesomeness of this Star Wars spaceship, but the versatility of the X-Wing is clearly a great attribute of the Rebel Alliance (and later the Resistance).
The Rebel Alliance mainly used T-65B starfighters during the Galactic Civil War, a 12.5 meter-long ship with 4 engines produced by Incom Corporation. Weapons include 4 laser cannons and 2 proton torpedo launchers, and they came in quite handy when Luke Skywalker destroyed the Death Star.
The new version used by the Resistance is similar in length and number of engines, but it's faster and even more maneuverable, and it can replace the proton torpedo launchers with a mag-pulse launcher or concussion missiles. Due to their cost, most of the ships used by the Resistance were supplied by the New Republic.
And we're grateful for that, because the X-Wing really deserves a top spot among Star Wars spaceships. Which one do you like better, old or new?