MAY 22, 2017 — Rolls-Royce is to supply Australian shipbuilder Incat Tasmania with four 20-cylinder Series 8000 MTU engines. They will power the new high-speed ROpax catamaran ferry that Incat is building for Virtu Ferries for operation on its daily year round Malta-Sicily service.
Set to be the largest high-speed catamaran operating in the Mediterranean, the vessel is 110 m in length and can accommodate 900 passengers plus crew and 167 vehicles on 490 truck lane m.
MTU has worked together successfully in the past with Virtu Ferries which has several catamarans in service on the Mediterranean and Adriatic.
Francis Portelli, Managing Director at parent company Virtu Holdings Limited, said: “We already have three ferries with MTU propulsion. These engines are light in weight, and we’re very satisfied with them and especially with the after-sales support so MTU was naturally our choice for our new ferry.”
Knut Müller, head of marine and defense business at MTU, said: “We’re delighted that Virtu Ferries has again chosen MTU, particularly since this is the first time we’re supplying Incat with our biggest engine – the Series 8000. Our past cooperation on the delivery of Series 4000 units was very successful.”
Besides the four 9,100-kW engines, MTU will also be delivering four 8V 2000 M51A gensets to Virtu Ferries.
The new Virtu RoPax ferry will shuttle between Malta and mainland Europe throughout the year, and the crossing from Malta to Sicily will take just 90 minutes at a speed of 38 knots.
The keel-laying is planned for June 2017, while the engines are scheduled for delivery to the shipyard in the second half of 2018.