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NYK contracts China Merchants to build revolutionary car carriers

Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) has eschewed local yards in Japan for its latest ship orders – a series of revolutionary car carriers. Japan’s second largest shipowner has chosen China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Nanjing to build four LNG-fuelled car carriers. These four vessels will be delivered from 2022 to 2023 and are planned to be assigned to transport vehicles mainly to/from Europe and/or to the Middle East.

On these vessels, WinGD’s X-DF2.0 iCER main engine will be utilised for the first time in the world. This engine consumes less gas and reduces GHG by cutting methane emissions from exhaust gas by approximately 50%, NYK claims. iCER stands for Intelligent Control by Exhaust Recycling and is the first technology upgrade of WinGD’s X-DF2.0 engine. iCER delivers enhanced combustion control through the use of inert gas.

Further, the vessels will be equipped with battery hybrid technology, which will improve fuel efficiency by mitigating main engine and electrical generator load fluctuations through the support of batteries. The use of LNG fuel, together with these new technologies and other developments such as hull modification, will contribute to a reduction of sulfur oxide (SOx) emissions by 99% compared to ships fuelled by heavy fuel oil, NYK claims. Likewise, nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions will be cut by 96%, and CO2 emissions by approximately 40% or more per unit of transportation.

The ships are 199.9 m long and capable of carrying 7,000 units. No price has been revealed for the quartet.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. Why cannot any methane produced in the combustion cycle be used either in the main engines or in some form of heat exchanger/boiler. Methane is a fuel

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