Volkswagen commits to Siem car carriers powered by LNG

Germany’s Volkswagen Group has opted for environmentally friendly transportation of its vehicles by committing to use two Siem Car Carriers vessels powered by LNG on routes between Europe and North America from 2019.

The two 7,000 ceu LNG-powered ships, replacing two of nine car carriers powered by heavy fuel oil, will be used exclusively for the Volkswagen Group in a round trip scheme across the North Atlantic serving the markets of Canada, the USA, Mexico and Europe.

Wolfram Thomas, head of group production at Volkswagen, said: “The Volkswagen Group is shouldering its responsibility for the environment. This not only applies to our cars but also to our production and logistics. We are pooling all our efforts to improve environmental compatibility in Logistics under the term Green Logistics. By commissioning the two LNG-powered freighters for the route between Europe and North America, Volkswagen Group Logistics is forging ahead with environmentally compatible, resource-efficient transport.“

Volkswagen said that the use of LNG-powered car carriers on other routes is being considered.

“We are pleased to have taken on board a partner in Volkswagen Group Logistics with whom we can pursue this innovative, future-oriented approach to roll-on/roll-of transport for the first time. The use of LNG-powered car carriers not only makes marine transport of this type more environmentally compatible but will also make the entire operation significantly more efficient in the long term,” said Kenneth Ross, CEO of Siem Car Carriers.


Grant Rowles

Grant spent nine years at Informa Group based in London, Sydney, Hong Kong and Singapore. He gained strong management experience in publishing, conferences and awards schemes in the shipping and legal areas, working on a number of titles including Lloyd's List. In 2009 Grant joined Seatrade responsible for the commercial development of Seatrade’s Asia products. In 2012, with Sam Chambers, he co-founded Asia Shipping Media.


  1. LNG vehicle carrier – sounds promising, but how about some facts on costs, emissions and consumption? The perspective “significantly more efficient in the long term” gives the Impression that Volkswagen will have to wait for lower taxes or higher heavy fuel prices to get into positive ROE. Congratulations anyhow.

    P. Franke, Technical Author, Hamburg Germany

    1. According to VW:

      The use of the two LNG-powered freighters for vehicle logistics across the North Atlantic will reduce emissions per ship and year by up to 25% in the case of CO2, up to 30% in the case of NOx, and up to 60% in the case of particulate matters (PM), while SOx emissions will be cut by as much as 100%. Emissions will be further reduced by the use of a highly advanced dual-fuel marine engine with direct injection and exhaust gas treatment.

Back to top button