Launched as Incat Tasmania (hull number 057) and already well known by virtue of her starring role at the Sydney Olympics, the first craft in the 98m Evolution 10B class has been long term chartered by New Zealand operator Tranz Rail. Now known as The Lynx the craft will set out from Hobart at 1200pm on Saturday afternoon, November 25th, on the start of her delivery voyage to New Zealand.
Tranz Rail has acquired The Lynx after a comprehensive strategic review of its fleet configuration. In the past, Tranz Rail chartered earlier generation Incat-built vessels from UK operator Condor Ferries to meet the needs of a seasonal fast ferry service. Entering service between Wellington and Picton on December 10th The Lynx will extend Tranz Rail’s fast ferry operation to a year round service and, with commercial vehicle capacity available, enable the withdrawal of a 28 years old conventional freight ferry.
Speaking of the latest addition to the Tranz Rail fleet General Manager Interisland Services, Thomas Davis said; “Everyone is incredibly excited by the new vessel’s arrival. The Lynx introduces a new era of comfort and service for fast ferries in New Zealand.”
The Evolution 10B class extends Incat’s ten year history in the production of high speed Wave Piercing ferries and delivers proven technology in a vessel capable of carrying a mix of passengers and freight at speeds over 40 knots. Owners and operators have the flexibility to configure the vessel to suit seasonal fluctuations whilst maximizing revenue. Deployed on a high volume tourist route, an operator will opt for maximum car capacity with minimum heavy vehicles, by utilising the mezzanine decks. To maximise flexibility during shoulder seasons or to provide a dedicated freight service, the mezzanine decks can be easily stowed to allow a high concentration of heavy highway vehicles.
Note to Editors: Photographs of The Lynx in her new Tranz Rail livery will be available after Monday, November 27th.