Maersk Line’s 15,500 teu vessel EUGEN MAERSK, one of the Danish shipping line’s eight original Odense-built E-class units, is to launch the expected upgrade of Maersk’s Far East to Europe service ‘AE2’ to superjumbo scale.
Replaced on the ‘AE10’ by the increasing number of 18,270 teu EEE-class ships that phase into Maersk’s largest service, the 397m vessel will join the ‘AE2’ in late November at Busan.
As part of its European rotation – Le Havre, Rotterdam, Bremerhaven, Hamburg, Antwerp, Felixstowe – the EUGEN MAERSK will become the largest Maersk unit ever to visit Hamburg and the longest ship ever to sail up the 100 kilometre fairway of the Elbe River. Admittedly however, she will only ‘beat’ CMA CGM’s 16,020 teu vessels, which regularly visit the German main port, by as little as 170 centimetres.
Until recently the ‘AE2’ employed a fleet of eleven 8,400 teu ships on a 77-day roundtrip. Since July, the loop is receiving the vessel ‘overspill’ from the ‘AE10’, with ships of 13,000 teu and 15,500 teu to cascade down.