Perth shipbuilder Austal’s Philippines yard has delivered the 115-metre, high-speed vehicle-passenger ferry Express 5, to Molslinjen of Denmark, following the successful completion of sea trials in Balamban, Cebu.
The ‘Auto Express 115’ high-speed catamaran ferry is the largest ferry (by volume) constructed by any Austal shipyard in the company’s 35-year history.
During sea trials, the vessel achieved a top speed of 40 knots, and bettered class quality standards for noise and vibration in the passenger decks, with a quiet and smooth ride, according to an announcement.
Austal Chief Executive Officer Paddy Gregg said the delivery of Express 5 was a testament to the resilience and capabilities of the Austal Philippines team, who constructed the vessel through the Covid pandemic and following the effects of Super Typhoon Rai in 2021.
Gregg said: “Despite the challenges faced, the Austal Philippines team has delivered the most impressive vessel ever to join the Molslinjen fleet.
“The high-speed ferry performed exceptionally well during sea trials and will soon provide a class leading service to Bornholm in Denmark.”
The ferry has the capability to incorporate hybrid-fuel engine technology achieving lower emissions and greater economy according to Gregg.
At a delivery ceremony held this week, Austal Philippines President Wayne Murray thanked his team who have now delivered 21 vessels from the Balamban, Cebu shipyard in just 10 years.
“It’s fitting that our latest and greatest ship is also the largest ever delivered by an Austal shipyard, anywhere in the world – the team are rightly very proud and are to be congratulated.”
Express 5 has the capacity for 1,610 passengers, space for 450 cars (or 617 lane metres for trucks plus 257 cars) over two vehicle decks and an operating service speed of 37 knots.
Picture: Austal/high-speed vehicle-passenger ferry Auto Express 115