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Havila Capella, the first of four new hybrid ferries ordered by Havila Kystruten, has been handed over to its Norwegian owner by Tersan Shipbuilding in Turkey. The second vessel, Havila Castor is also nearing completion.

The newbuilds are part of Havila’s contract with Norwegian Ministry of Transport for the Bergen-Kirkenes coastal route. Featuring a length of 125m and a beam of 20m, the ships will be able to accommodate 700 passengers.

The vessels have a hybrid gas-electric propulsion system with battery, where four gas-powered Bergen engines in each vessel run the generators. The system is also adapted to the next generation of technology, using hydrogen fuel cells. Corvus Energy has provided the Energy Storage Systems which have a capacity of 6,100kWh – double the capacity of any existing battery-operated ferries.

The vessel will now depart from Turkey and is planned to enter service on 1 December.

CEO of Havila Voyages, Bent Martini, said this is a day of joy. “We are among many who have waited a long time for this, and now the first ship is finally in our hands and we will start preparing for setting sail towards Norway.”

Mehmet Gazioğlu, general manager of Tersan is also happy that the first ship now can leave the quay at the yard. “The coastal cruise ships for Havila Voyages are a special assignment for us. We have faced various challenges, including the corona pandemic, which has led to delays, but we have learned a lot from the first ship and expect more efficient construction of the next ones. And today we are looking forward to seeing the good result and the beautiful ship that Havila Capella has become.”

To make the final preparation more efficient, both workers from the yard and subcontractors will be involved in parts of and the entire voyage to Bergen. In addition, Havila Voyages has its own employees who start work on preparing the ship for traffic along the Norwegian coast. When the ship arrives in Bergen, even more people will be on board to familiarize themselves and get ready for the first sailing.

Havila Capella is a large hotel with 179 cabins, several restaurants and large common areas that will be made ready in a very short time in addition to crew and hotel employees to get to know the ship, systems and each other. But we have got off to a good start already, and we are confident that this will go well,” said Martini.

Even before the ship enters service, the coast and nature will benefit from the environmentally friendly ships of the Havila Voyages. The ship stays at the quay for a couple of weeks in Bergen. Then the ship is operated by the batteries on board and clean hydropower. “It gives zero emissions and no smoke that settles over Bergen city center. And that is just the beginning of Havila Voyages’s history with environmentally friendly voyages along the coast where we with the world’s largest battery pack on board can go without noise and emissions for up to four hours,” concluded Martini.