The 4YW sourcebook refers to the ship classes and subclasses by their names; Tikopai
is namedropped on p.18 along with Achernar
as having been introduced as a "new class of starships" during the conflict.
Since that part is an excerpt from a postwar lecture by one Commodore van Anling, I attribute it to the failing memory of the old geezer.
Which is a bit cheeky of me, as van Anling says he served aboard a Tikopai
himself - namely the Vega
, one of the higher-numbered ships and one not even Ships of the Star Fleet
wants to move from "approved" to "built" status. Presumably, van Anling did serve aboard a USS Vega
, and merely got the class identity wrong because he misread the works of Franz Joseph when checking his facts for the speech.
A supposedly more objective timeline on p.35 confirms the introduction of the Tikopai
class on SD 1/9509, though. That's something like late 2247 by my reckoning, and too early in every respect for the overall Constitution
story I'm following. Even the original class was barely operational at the time of this conflict by modern accounts (canon and novel alike).
For me, the Tikopai
is a post-ST:TMP newbuild, and Constitution
IV and all, only ever built in the numbers specified by Todd Guenther.