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Motivated by new performance requirements and technological progress Fraunhofer FHR has initiated the development of a low-cost coherent radar system demonstrator with AESA antenna for maritime applications. The proposed system is expected to exhibit smaller operational costs and better performance than conventional shipborne navigation radar systems. In this contribution an overview of the total system was given. Emphasis was placed on the overall system design and the verification of the feasibility resorting to commercial low-cost components (COTS). The antenna front-end and the custom-designed mixed-signal integrated circuits which are the core components of the T/R-modules were presented. In the near future, a demonstrator of the antenna front-end will be completed enabling representative performance measurements.