Australian Cat for Japan

Heralding a new era in Japanese ferry transportation, the impressive new Incat 112m Wave Piercing Catamaran Natchan Rera has been delivered to Higashi Nihon Ferry.

Heralding a new era in Japanese ferry transportation, the impressive new Incat 112m Wave Piercing Catamaran Natchan Rera has been delivered to Higashi Nihon Ferry.

Specifically designed and built to meet the requirements of Higashi Nihon Ferry, the Incat 112m Natchan Rera (Incat Hull 064) delivers a craft well equipped to handle the demanding challenges of a providing a vital ferry service between the islands of Honshu and Hokkaido.

Commenting on the handover of the craft at Hobart, Incat Chairman Robert Clifford said, “Construction of the world’s largest, most fuel efficient diesel-powered high speed catamaran is a proud moment for all Incat staff.

“Incat has been leading the way at the cutting edge of high speed ferry design, development and innovation for many years and the completion of Natchan Rera demonstrates the company’s position as a world-leader in the high-speed catamaran market.

“These vessels are set to revolutionise the Japanese ferry industry. Never before has such a technologically advanced ship operated in the Japanese market. Never before has Incat built such a large ship and for a new customer in an area with such enormous potential for Incat High Speed Craft.” he said.

The order for the Natchan Rera, and a sister to follow next year, is a major part of the on-going Higashi Nihon Ferry business development plan for the expansion of regular passenger services across Tsugaru Strait between the ports of Hakodate on the island of Hokkaido and Aomori on the island of Honshu. The luxury vehicle-passenger ferry will approximately halve the time currently taken for voyages between Aomori and Hakodate by the existing ships and greatly enhance the convenience of regular passenger services.

The Chief Executive of Higashi Nihon Ferry, Mr Shinji Koga comments, “We gained confidence in high speed ferries after a research visit to Europe in the autumn of 2005. As a result of our visit, during which we were impressed by the Incat 91m ferry sailing with Mols-Linien in Denmark and the 98m ferry sailing on the English Channel with Brittany Ferries, we were convinced to introduce a high speed ferry on the route between Hakodate and Aomori.