Sunseeker and Rolls-Royce collaborate with MTU

The parties involved will unveil the new hybrid propulsion system at boot Dusseldorf…

British superyacht builder, Sunseeker International and Rolls-Royce have announced that the two entities are collaborating with German engine manufacturer MTU for a new hybrid propulsion system, to be integrated into a yacht by 2020.

The new Sunseeker yacht will have an integrated MTU hybrid propulsion system.

At boot Dusseldorf, taking place on 19th to the 27th January, the parties involved will unveil the new hybrid propulsion system. The New system promises to be powerful with low vibration and emission levels. The proposed vessel to be completed in 2020 will feature two 12-cylinder MTU Series 2000 diesel engines, each of which will deliver approximately 1,432 kW/ 1,947 hp of power.

The new system comes with a series of modular expansion options, and offers six operating modes, including one called ‘smart hybrid’ and another called ‘charge hybrid’, which both allow the use of all power sources on board as required. The ‘electric’ mode allows the use of the yacht’s propulsion and on-board power to be supplied continuously by the generators. According to the shipyard, this allows the optimisation of fuel consumption and comfort on-board for long and overnight passages. There is also a ‘silent mode’, which produced no emissions whatsoever using power solely from the batteries, up to 40 minutes of propulsion and 120 minutes.

“The way owners are using their boats continues to evolve with efficiency and noise reduction now is as important as features and volume, which all contribute to their ultimate purchase decision,” says Sean Robertson, sales director at Sunseeker International. “This hybrid technology will feature in a brand-new model launching in 2020, and will allow owners a choice of multiple operating modes from all-electric with zero emissions through to use of the twin 12-cylinder diesel engines, delivering efficient class-leading performance.”

Sunseeker and MTU have had a successful working relationship for more than 18 years and have reportedly installed more than 1.8 million hp of power on yachts from 20 to 47m.

“The combination of diesel engines and electric motors, in addition to batteries and their variable areas of application, offer yacht owners significant benefits,” says Knut Mu¨ller, head of marine and government business at MTU. “Silent cruising, combined with low vibration and emission levels, offer tremendous gains in terms of on-board comfort. High performance levels, efficiency, environmental compatibility and the flexibility of the propulsion system are of great interest today when operating a yacht.

“We believe that the focus in the future yacht industry will be more and more on smart and innovative system solutions, rather than just focussing on the power output level,” concludes Mu¨ller”