Erm nope it isn't. The RA ships are more than adequate for gameplay. It's been like this for a long time.
I only have the Oddy on two characters because I was playing during the anniversary event that introduced it and did the quest that rewarded it. It is not the same as the zen ones, it is inline I believe with the fleet varient. If it wasn't or that I would still be using my RA ships.
Standard VA ships are the same tier as RA ships; coming the same number of BO powers, stats and 9 console slots. The only difference is that they come with a special console and a different BO layout for $25. Fleet and triple pack ships are the exception(they may be considered T5.5), with 10 console slots, and a ~10% bonus over their T5 cousins.
Hey all, I just reached Vice Admiral (50) and after visiting Quinn I noticed I didn't get a free ship token. Does anyone know if you get one or not? you do with every other 10 ranks.
Question regarding your question (for my own personal knowledge):
Are you a subscriber at all, or a full Free-to-play player? Also, like the other authors have already stated, you receive your final free ship at lvl 40 (Rear Admiral, Lower Half). Also, like the other comments stated, the lvl 40 ship IS not at all bad! I myself still use the my two Sovereign-class assault cruisers I received when both characters reached lvl 40, respectively!