The Neapolitan group giant Grimaldi has exercised options with China State Shipbuilding Corp (CSSC) for a pair of Pure Car & Truck Carrier (PCTC) vessels with delivery in 2026.

The options take Grimaldi’s total orderbook with CSSC to seven vessels worth $630m.

Specifically, last January the company signed an agreement with Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding and China Shipbuilding Trading Company, two companies part of China State Shipbuilding Corporation, for the construction of five PCTC ships. The option for another two sister vessels was exercised few days ago.

The deal with the Chinese shipyard for the construction of the seven PCTCs is valued in excess of $630 million.

This investment is part of the Grimaldi Group’s fleet renewal plan, which includes 26 ships currently under construction: 17 ammonia-ready car carriers, five “G5”-class multipurpose ro-ro units, two “GG5G”-class hybrid ro-ro vessels and two “Superstar”-class ro-pax ships (for the subsidiary Finnlines).

Like their five sister vessels, the two new PCTC ships will be deployed on voyages between Europe, North Africa, the Near and Far East.

Emanuele Grimaldi, Group Managing Director said: “Investing in the design and construction of such large, eco-friendly vessels as these new ammonia-ready PCTC units means making a concrete contribution both to the development of international trade and to the ecological transition in the shipping sector.”

Mr. Grimaldi added that “Our fleet modernization project is extremely ambitious, but this is the kind of initiatives that our sector needs to tackle decarbonisation, one of the most urgent and demanding challenges of our time”.

The new buildings having a length of 200 meters, a width of 38 meters and a loading capacity of 9,000 ceu, will transport electric and fossil fuel vehicles (cars, SUVs, vans, etc.) as well as other types of heavy rolling freight (weighing up to 250 tons).

They will also be equipped with a new type of electronic engine whose specific consumption is one of the lowest in its category.

Additionally the units due to their emission abatement systems “will comply with the most stringent limits established at international level for CO2, NOx and SOx emissions,” as the shipowner claims.

The new ships, designed for cold ironing with shoreside supply of electricity (where available), received the Ammonia Ready class notation from RINA, the Italian Shipping Register, which certifies that they may be converted for the use of ammonia as an alternative, zero-carbon fuel.