She does have a bit of firepower, but Intrepids have them beat any day. Who wouldn't want to outmanuver their enemy by intentionally putting your ship smack on the surface of a planet? Sounds more useful than split in two. But each has its ups and downs.
Yes, but Intrepids are not as verstile. But If I was given command of a star ship, I'd either ask for an Intrepid or a New Orleans class.