Weihai Haida is the exclusive operator on the route between the major cities of Weihai and Dalian on opposite sides of the Bohai strait in NE China where it provides a Ropax service. It currently has two vessels on the route – the Xin Shen Shen and Shen Shen 1 – with the former soon set to exit service.
The newbuilding will be constructed at local Huanghai shipyard and will be called Shen Shen 2. It will have a twin-screw propulsion plant comprising two MAN 9L32/40 (IMO Tier-II compliant) four-stroke engines manufactured by MAN Diesel & Turbo in Augsburg (Germany), two Renk single-reduction gearboxes with PTO shaft to drive alternators, and two MAN CP propellers using the new, high efficiency type Alpha VBS1020 Mk 5 design. Additionally, the Alphatronic 2000 has been designated as propulsion control system. MAN Diesel & Turbo Frederikshavn (Denmark) will support the integration of the full propulsion package. The new ferry will be capable of carrying its 2,200 passengers at a design speed of 18 knots.
Along with the optimized propulsion package, Weihai Haida has also ordered engine spare-parts from MAN PrimeServ, MAN Diesel & Turbo’s after-sales division.
Weihai Haida is a new customer for MAN Diesel & Turbo but the company has a long-term relationship with Huanghai shipyard that has seen the construction of eight Ropax ferries with MAN four-stroke propulsion systems to date. The shipbuilder has also ordered 34 MAN Diesel & Turbo license-built, two-stroke engines in this time.
The regional increase in tourism is an important driver for the order of the ferry. The city of Weihai and its hinterland has a fast-developing and attractive seaside location and is currently experiencing growing numbers of tourists from northern China, especially from around the Dalian area.