Second LNG-fueled 7,000 CEU car carrier joins CMA CGM

CMA CGM has welcomed to its fleet the second 7,000 CEU LNG dual-fuel roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) newbuild, the CMA CGM Monaco.

Built at Chinese shipyard Jinling Shipyard Jiangsu, the car carrier has made its first stop in Yantai, China.

Currently en route to Europe, CMA CGM Monaco is expected to call Tilbury in the UK by mid-March. The maiden call is said to herald a ‘significant leap in automotive transport between Asia and Europe’.

As the latest addition to CMA CGM’s car carrier fleet, the Malta-flagged CMA CGM Monaco has a length of 200 meters and a width of 38 meters.

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Equipped with LNG and battery hybrid technology, the vessel sets a new standard in reducing emissions, offering a greener pathway for the booming electric vehicle market.

With twelve decks and capacity for 7,000 vehicles, the CMA CGM Monaco is at the forefront of enhancing China-Europe trade exchanges, CMA CGM said. In 2023, China surpassed Japan and became the world’s largest automobile exporter. The increase in vehicle trade and the increasing share of pure electric/hybrid vehicles is expected to further drive the demand for car carriers.

Last week, CMA CGM Indianapolis, the first of four identical RoRo ships that will be sailing for CMA CGM in the future, made its maiden call at BLG AutoTerminal Bremerhaven, Germany.

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The third and fourth vessels from the batch, the CMA CGM Monza and CMA CGM Silverstone, will soon join the French company’s fleet.

In 2023, the French shipping group consolidated into a single specialty maritime shipping department its car carrier business and La MĂ©ridionale, a Marseille-based company which operates ro-pax cargo and passenger ships whose acquisition was completed in 2023.

Attesting to its ambition for La Méridionale, the group also announced that it has ordered two LNG-powered RoPax ships for the company, which will sail under the French flag, using the first register category. The vessel’s design will deliver improved environmental performance, with a 50% reduction in CO2 emissions. 

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In related news, earlier this month the Marseille-based group took delivery of CMA CGM Mermaid, the first in a series of ten 2,000 TEU containerships powered by LNG.

The group has invested more than $15 billion in a fleet of nearly 120 LNG and methanol-powered ships to be built by 2027. The investment is part of the group’s efforts to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.