Current Local Ferry FleetDFDSFerriesPast and PresentStena E-FlexerStena RoRo

MV Côte D’Opale – Past and Present

IMO Number: 9858321

MV Côte D’Opale

ex Avic Weihai W0268

© Julien Carpentier

Steel twin screw “Stena E-Flexer” class motor vessel built in 2021 by China Merchants Jinling (ex Avic Shipyard, Weihai) China (Yard No W0268) as Passenger and Car Ferry for Stena RoRo AB, Gothenburg, Sweden. Long Term chartered to DFDS A/S, Copenhagen, Denmark

Technical Data


Current AIS Location


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History

The 5th addition to Stena’s E-FLEXER class cruise ferries/RoPax vessels being constructed by China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Weihai for Stena RoRo.

April 26th 2018: Stena RoRo AB signed a contract for a new build vessel to be long-term chartered to DFDS A/S. 

© DFDS

© DFDS (Artists Impression)

Stena RoRo signs contract for new build for long-term charter to DFDS

THU, APR 26, 2018.

The vessel now ordered is the fifth in the Stena E-Flexer RoPax class and Stena RoRo has a further three options on vessels for delivery from 2021 and onwards. The new build has been signed to a 10-year bareboat charter with DFDS. The new ferry will operate in the English Channel between Dover and Calais. With a capacity of 3,100 lane metres and up to 1,000 passengers, the vessel will be DFDS’s largest ferry operating in the English Channel. The ship will be designed to the highest technical and environmental standard and will offer an anticipated 25 per cent lower fuel consumption compared with today’s ferries.

In 2016, Stena RoRo placed an order for four large RoPax vessels with the Chinese shipyard AVIC International with an option for a further four vessels. The vessel now ordered is the fifth in the series.

“The design of the ship will be worked out in close cooperation with DFDS. This deal is a good example of how we work being the largest and most well-known tonnage provider in the RoPax segment”, says Per Westling, MD of Stena RoRo.’’

The order is part of DFDS’s renewal of its fleet and will replace one of the six ferries currently operating in the English Channel.

“These ships have been designed not only to the highest standards of technical and environmental performance but also with a high degree of flexibility, thus ensuring that the design can be modified in order to fulfill our clients specific needs. As a tonnage provider we are very pleased and proud to be trusted by DFDS to develop this vessel for their very intensive English Channel service”, says Per Westling.

”In addition to this order, we also recently concluded a similar deal with the French ferry operator Brittany Ferries. The other three vessels will be operated by Stena Line on the Irish Sea”, Per Westling said.

Source: Stena RoRo

© Stena RoRo

Artist’s impression of the new DFDS vessel © Stena RoRo

May 30th 2019: Steel cut. (Fifth in an anticipated series of nine “Stena E-Flexer” class vessels).

© DFDS

© DFDS

October 15th 2019: The keel was officially laid. DFDS will take the ferry on a 10 year bareboat charter from delivery in China in June 2021 and the ferry will enter service on the Dover-Calais route. It will be the longest ship on the channel.

© DFDS

© DFDS

Construction

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS

Construction at China Merchants Jinling © DFDS

May 20th 2020: Floated out of the building dock ready for internal fit out.

© Stena RoRo  © Stena RoRo

© Stena RoRo

© DFDS  © DFDS

Float Out (20/05/20) © DFDS

Stena RoRo’s fifth E-Flexer RoPax launched in China – has unique design and becomes longest ferry in the English Channel

WED, MAY 20, 2020

The Côte d’Opale is the fifth in the Stena E-Flexer RoPax class. Stena RoRo has signed a long-term charter agreement with DFDS, which has been very involved in the ship’s unique design. When put into service next summer, the Côte d’Opale, with its 214 meters, will be the longest ferry operating in the English Channel.

Stena RoRo has thus far ordered nine large RoPax vessels of the E-Flexer class from Chinese shipyard CMI Jinling (Weihai) and has an option for two more. The Côte d’Opale will serve the Dover-Calais route and differs from other E-Flexer vessels in that it lacks cabins. Instead, there will be extra-large areas for activities and conveniences for passengers. The stem is especially designed to fit the quayside facilities in both ports and in addition, it is equipped with a third bow thruster to facilitate the many daily maneuvers in port.

“The Côte d’Opale is a good example of these vessels’ high degree of flexibility,” says Per Westling, CEO for Stena RoRo. “We focus on adapting the design to our customers’ specific wishes. In addition to far-reaching regarding the environmental aspects and technology, flexibility is one of the departure points for the E-Flexer RoPax class.”  

Now that the Côte d’Opale has been launched, work continues with creating the on-board environment and the installation of systems and equipment. The ferry will be put into service immediately after delivery, scheduled for June 30, 2021.

Source: Stena RoRo 

June 30th 2021: Contracted delivery date to Stena RoRo AB, Gothenburg.


Fitting Out

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS  © DFDS 

© DFDS  © DFDS 

© DFDS  © DFDS

Fitting Out © DFDS

Côte D’Opale well underway

January 20, 2021

This year we will welcome the Côte D’Opale into the Channel family and with just a few months to go until her maiden voyage, she is coming along nicely.

Construction started in May 2019 at the Avic Shipyard in Weihai, China, and there is just 15% of the build left until she is ready! Around 300 people are working on the ship to prepare her for the sea trials in May, after which the Côte D’Opale will be ready to welcome you onboard. With her 214 metres length and the capacity for 1000 passengers, she will be the longest ferry on the Channel and will welcome both freight and leisure passengers.  

The Côte D’Opale will have the largest retail space of all our channel ships stretching 1,100 square metres in an open plan concept. A large atrium with a bright skylight will be the centrepiece of the retail experience onboard. There will then be separate ‘wings’ for each product category including perfume & cosmetics, beer, wine & spirits and gifts & technology. Duty Free will add more excitement to the shopping experience, with huge savings on premium products available onboard. 

Steve Newbery, Onboard Commercial Director, said: “We’re delighted to be welcoming the Côte D’Opale to our channel routes this summer and can’t wait to welcome customers onboard when it’s safe to do so. With shopping and dining experiences to rival large shopping centres or airports, the ship will offer more space, more choice, and a unique travel experience for our valued customers.”

© DFDS  © DFDS  

© DFDS  © DFDS  

© DFDS

Source: DFDS News

2021: Upon delivery to Stena RoRo she will immediately be chartered to DFDS A/S, Copenhagen for services between Dover – Calais replacing the CALAIS SEAWAYS.

© DFDS

© DFDS (2nd March 2021 at China Merchants Jinling Shipyard)

April 12th 2021: Left Weihai for first sea-trials.

April 15th 2021: First sea trials completed and returned to Weihai.

May 17th 2021: Announcement made the she had been “Delivered” and would shortly leave China for Europe.

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS

© DFDS

May 27th  2021: Left Weihai showing destination as Singapore (eta: 02/06/2021).

June 2nd 2021: Arrived Singapore for bunkering/storing.

June 3rd 2021: Left Singapore for Galle/Sri Lanka.

June 15th 2021: Arrived Colombo/Sri Lanka.

June 20th 2021: Left Colombo showing destination as Suez.

July 10th 2021: Arrived in Calais.

 

 

© Julien Carpentier (Calais, 10/07/2021) 

July 10th 2021: Trials at Calais.

July 12th 2021: Arrived in Dover for trials and crew familiarization.

© Dave Standen  © Dave Standen

© Dave Standen

© Dave Standen (Dover, 12/07/2021)

July 12th 2021: To Damen Yard, Dunkerque (East) for re registering under the French flag, homeport of Le Havre. 

 

© Julien Carpentier (Damen Dunkerque, 13/07/2021)

July 28th 2021: Successful deployment of the evacuation system in Dunkerque (East).

 

 

© Julien Carpentier (Dunkerque East, 28/07/2021)

August 2nd (a.m.): Conducted berthing trials at Dunkerque (West).

 

 

© Julien Carpentier (Dunkerque West, 02/08/2021)

© Maritime Photographic

© Maritime Photographic (Dover, 02/08/2021)

August 2nd 2021: To Dover for further trials.

August 3rd 2021: “Press/Media visits” in Dover before sailing to Calais.


Côte D’Opale – Interior

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin  © Duncan Martin

© Duncan Martin

August 4th 2021: Official naming ceremony in Calais by Godmother Peggy Bouchet (French sailor, adventurer and entrepreneur. She is the first woman to paddle across the Atlantic Ocean)

© DFDS  © DFDS

© DFDS Group    

August 4th 2021: Maiden commercial sailing Calais – Dover. (“Fireworks Welcome”)

© DFDS

© DFDS Group   

© Cedric Hacke

© Cedric Hacke (Calais, 25/06/2022)

July 14th 2022: Dressed overall to celebrate Bastille Day.

© Julien Carpentier (Calais, 14/07/2022)

© Julien Carpentier

© Julien Carpentier (Dover, 24/01/2023)

March 7th 2023 – March 22nd 2023: Planned refit at Fayard A/S, Munkebo

March 4th 2023: Came off service at Dover and sailed to Lindoe, Denmark (Fayard A/S, Munkebo)(eta 07/03/2023)

© Peter Therkildsen

© Peter Therkildsen

March 21st 2023: Left Lindoe.

© Peter Therkildsen

© Peter Therkildsen

March 23rd 2023: Arrived in Calais to resume service.

© Stéphane Vancutsem © Stéphane Vancutsem © Stéphane Vancutsem © Stéphane Vancutsem

© Stéphane Vancutsem (Calais, 16/11/2023)

December 18th 2023: Suffered “Technical Issues” (reportedly: rudder problems) and sailed from Calais to Dunkerque East.

December 21st 2023: Left Dunkerque East and sailed to Calais to resume service Calais – Dover.

January 28th 2024: Came off service at Calais and sailed to Dunkerque East.

January 28th 2024: Arrived Dunkerque East.

January 3rd 2024: Left Dunkerque East, sailed to Calais and resumed service Calais – Dover.

May 19th 2024: Conducted berthing trials in Dunkerque East (Nee=w Ro/Ro 6) before returning to service.


All information is believed to be correct and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions. All items included in this article are subject to © copyright. We would like to take this opportunity of thanking: Julien Carpentier, DFDS, Gary Davies (Maritime Photographic), Cedric Hacke, Duncan Martin, Dave Standen , Stena RoRo AB. Peter Therkildsen and Stéphane Vancutsem for their assistance in producing this feature.

Article © Nigel Thornton and Ray Goodfellow (Dover Ferry Photos Group)

One Comment

  1. Great Photos- so used to seeing Lifeboat down each side- on this one visible Life saving vessel, I take same the other side, but I wonder what else would be available speedily?

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