The Mega Express and Mega Express II sister ships are passenger/vehicle ferries. They are operated by Corsica Ferries and owned by Tourship Italia. They were built by the Orlando, Italian-based Company, Cantiere Navale Fratelli. The ferries will be used in the Mediterranean to service the route from Toulon to Ajaccio via Bastia. There will also be alternative services running to Sardinia.
The ferry has an overall length of 176.01m and a length between perpendiculars of 159.7m. It has a 24.8m moulded breadth. The moulded depth to deck 3 – the main deck – is 9.3m, while the depth to deck 6 is 17.6m.
It has a gross tonnage of 23,700t and its displacement is 14,500t. It has a design deadweight of 3,500dwt, its design draught is 6.3m and its scantling draught is 6.55m.
The Mega Express accommodates a total of 1,860 passengers. These passengers enter the vessel through side doors on deck 3. They are then transported to the entrance on Deck 5 by escalator.
There are 294 cabins available, mainly in a 2+2 arrangement with en-suite bathroom, although there are also four and two-berth cabins. The remaining passengers may use up to 300 couchettes.
The vehicles enter and exit the ferry via two stern doors/ramps on the port and starboard, as well as a bow door/ramp located on Deck 3. They are stowed on two principal decks as well as two hoistable decks. Vehicle access to the different decks is via tiltable ramps. This gives the ferry a total of 2,500 lane metres for cars, of which 790 lane metres have a sufficient height for lorries. This translates into a maximum of 550 cars.
The Bridge control system is manufactured by Lips, based on the joystick system called the Lips-stick. There are two Consilium radars and two telecom (Furuno) satellite navigation systems.
The fire system employs a Consilium detection system, with the extinguishing systems made by Mirimax. These consist of a sprinkler system for the cabins and public areas, a drencher for the vehicle areas and a CO2 system for the engine room.
The Mega Express is driven by a main assembly of four Wartsila engines. These 12VR46 C engines have an output of 11,700kW each when driven at 514rpm. These engines were originally constructed to the ‘C’ power output, however this was re-rated to the engine-builder’s B standard.
A pair of these engines are each connected to a twin input/single output gearbox manufactured by Renk. These have an output speed of 155rpm. Each of these are connected to a controllable pitch propeller manufactured by Lips. These copper-nickel-aluminium propellers have a diameter of 5m. This arrangement gives the ferry a service speed of 29 knots when driven at 85% MCR.
To ensure a smooth ride, the stabilisation equipment includes fins manufactured by Mitsubishi, as well as control equipment from Framo. The water ballast tanks have a capacity of 988m³.
To assist with the mooring, there is a pair of Lips bow thrusters. These generate 1,600kW each when driven at 1,200rpm. Each engine-pair has a power take off connected to an alternator to provide electricity for the main vessel. The Mega Express uses two Marelli units, each with an output of 2,500kW with the shaft turning at 1,200rpm. There are also three diesel-driven alternators. Each of these consists of a MAN B&W L28/32H connected to a Marelli alternator. Each of these has an output of 1,600kW when driven at 720rpm. The engine room also has two thermal oil boilers. These are manufactured by Wiesloch and each have an output of 3,000kW.
The Mega Express is classified by Registro Italiano Navale with the notation +100A1.1, IL NAV. IAQ1 MNTP(Ro-Ro), TR, NAV 1B.