The world’s first LNG-fueled Pure Car and Truck Carrier (PCTC), delivered by Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. to United European Car Carriers (UECC) at the end of September, was officially named Auto Eco at a naming ceremony on November 21 at the Port of Zeebrugge, Belgium.
The ceremony was attended by Geert Bourgeois, minister-president of the government of Flanders; Claire Tillekaerts, CEO of Flanders Investment and Trade; Masafumi Ishii, Japan’s ambassador to Belgium; Takao Kusakari, NYK senior advisor; and Koichi Chikaraishi, NYK senior managing corporate officer; among others.
During the ceremony, Mr. Glenn Edvardsen (CEO/UECC) stated: “It is the first PCTC of its kind in the world to be fitted with a dual-fuel LNG propulsion system, allowing it to complete a fourteen-day round -trip voyage solely on LNG without refueling. AUTO ECO not only meets existing emissions regulations but also exceeds them, allowing her to trade in any Environment Control Area, worldwide.”
Auto Eco is equipped with dual-fuel engines that can use either liquefied natural gas (LNG) or heavy fuel oil and marine gas oil. The vessel is also a Finnish/Swedish ice class 1A super vessel, thus allowing for safe, full-year sailing in the Baltic Sea, where ice is common in winter.
United European Car Carriers (UECC) is equally owned by NYK and Wallenius Lines.