Also known as:

Stena E-Flexer 1 / Stena E-Flexer 2 / GALACIA / Stena E-Flexer 4 / Stena E-Flexer 5 / SALAMANCA

IMO:

9807293 / 9807308 / 9807310 / 9807322 / 9856189 / 9858321

An artists rendering of the new Stena E-Flexer class. All four vessels are now confirmed as earmarked for Stena's routes from Belfast. Stena Line.
Yard Number:

AVIC Weihai [CN] #WO263 / #WO264 / #WO265 /#WO266 / #WO267 / #WO268

This article is a brief overview of the Stena E-Flexer class of RoPax vessels.  A more in-depth look at the class with archived updates is available here.

What is Stena E-Flexer?

Stena E-Flexer is a series of up to 8 new passenger and vehicle RoPax ferries ordered by Stena RoRo from the AVIC Weihai shipyard in China.  As the name suggests, they are designed to be flexible as well as efficient.  The series will feature a new unique hull shape developed by Stena and Deltamarin, with the bow shaped to reduce resistance including around the openings for the thrusters, and the stern shaped to reduce wave making.  As well as being efficient, E-Flexer is designed with a high capacity, and can carry up to 50% more vehicles than today's standard RoPax vessels.  At speeds of 18 knots and below the vessels will be able to run on just one of its two propellers, with the other propeller feathered in order to minimise resistance through the water.

Rendering of the new Stena E-Flexer class. All four vessels are now confirmed as earmarked for Stena's routes from Belfast. Stena Line.
Rendering of the new Stena E-Flexer class. Stena Line.

To date a total of 6 vessels have been confirmed as ordered for 3 different operators.  Stena RoRo's sister company Stena Line is expected to take delivery of three examples for Irish Sea routes, while Brittany Ferries will receive two vessels for long-haul services between England and Spain.  These will be named GALACIA and SALAMANCA (external link). The remaining example has been ordered for DFDS and is expected to operate between Dover and Calais.  Two options from the original contract signed between Stena and AVIC in 2016 remain to be exercised.

 

VesselYard NumberOperatorEstimated deliveryPlanned RouteName
1WO263Stena Line logoStena LineLate 2019 Holyhead - Dublin *
2WO264Stena Line logoStena LineLate 2019 / early2020Belfast - Birkenhead *
3WO265Brittany FerriesAutumn 2020Portsmouth - Le Havre/Bilbao/Santander

Portsmouth - Bilbao/Santander
(replacing BAIE DE SEINE (external link) and CAP FINISTERE (external link))

GALACIA
4WO266Stena Line logoStena Line2020Belfast - Birkenhead *
5WO267DFDS2021Dover - Calais
(Replacing CALAIS SEAWAYS (external link)))
6WO268Brittany Ferries2021(Replacing CAP FINISTERE (external link))SALAMANCA
7Option - not yet exercised---
8Option - not yet exercised---
* On 8/06/18 Stena Line confirmed which routes their three E-Flexer class vessels will be deployed on.  E-Flexer #1 will go to the  Holyhead - Dublin route (in place of STENA SUPERFAST X) and #2 and #4 will go to the Belfast to Birkenhead route (it is assumed by NIFS they will replace all 3 current vessels STENA LAGAN, STENA MERSEY, and STENA PRECISION). 

 

Rendering of Brittany Ferries' Stena E-Flexer class vessels. Brittany Ferries.
Rendering of Brittany Ferries' Stena E-Flexer class vessels. Brittany Ferries.

All of the vessels ordered to date will be 214.5m long and have capacity for up to 1000 people and 3100 lane metres of freight.  Although constructed in China, suppliers from Europe are heavily involved in the E-Flexer project.  Germany's Reinhold & Mahla are responsible for the interior outfitting, with Sweden's Figura Arkitekter responsible for the interior design on behalf of Stena RoRo and AVIC Weihai.   Caterpillar Marine are supplying the propulsion package via their Scandinavian dealer Pon Power.  The entire project is supervised by Stena RoRo themselves and Finland's Deltamarin, who are also the consulting naval architect on the project.  The original E-Flexer design has 175 cabins, however this has been increased to around 300 (plus 36 freight driver cabins) on the two Brittany Ferries examples by replacing the dedicated car deck with passenger spaces.  The DFDS example is expected to not have any passenger cabins due to the short nature of the 90 minute Dover - Calais crossing she is being built for.

Updated DFDS Stena E-Flexer render provided by Stena RoRo. Stena RoRo.
Updated DFDS Stena E-Flexer render provided by Stena RoRo. Stena RoRo.

 On 8/06/18 Stena Line confirmed which routes their three E-Flexer class vessels will be deployed on.  E-Flexer #1 will go to the  Holyhead - Dublin route (in place of STENA SUPERFAST X) and #2 and #4 will go to the Belfast to Birkenhead route (it is assumed by NIFS they will replace all 3 of the vessels currently on the route - STENA LAGAN, STENA MERSEY, and STENA PRECISION). Brittany Ferries have confirmed that the examples they are chartering will be deployed on the Portsmouth - Le Havre and Portsmouth - Bilbao/Santander routes, and DFDS have stated they intend to deploy their example on the Dover - Calais route.  However, DFDS has also stated that they will finalise deployment in 2020 according to market conditions.

Key technical information

A more detailed technical specification of the individual vessels is available on the main Stena E-Flexer page here.

Side profile drawing of the newly ordered Stena Ro-pax ferries to be built by AVIC Weihai in China. Image: Stena Line
Original side profile drawing released by Stena of the Stena E-Flexer RoPax ferries being built by AVIC Weihai in China. Image: Stena Line

 

Class nameStena E-Flexer
DesignStena AB / Deltamarin
Construction YardAVIC Weihai, Shandong Province, China
Vessel OwnerStena RoRo
Vessel OperatorsStena Line (3), Brittany Ferries (2), DFDS (1)
DeliveryLate 2019 - 2021
Length214.5m
Breadth27.8m
Draught6.4m
Gross TonnageApprox 40.000
Total number of decks10
Number of passenger decks3
Design Speed22 knots
Passenger Capacity (including crew)1000
Freight Capacity3100 lane metres
Capacity of dedicated passenger vehicle and small van deck
(not included on the  Brittany Ferries examples)
120

 

The signing ceremony for the contract between Stena and AVIC Weihai for the construction of 4 RoPax ferries. AVIC
The signing ceremony for the contract between Stena and AVIC Weihai for the construction of 4 (with options for a further 4) RoPax ferries. AVIC


The above article is Copyright © Steven Tarbox, all rights reserved.  Unauthorised reproduction or distribution is strictly prohibited.

Last Updated: 30/05/18

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