The Wärtsilä shipyard and Enso Gutzeit signed a contract about building the first passenger/car-ferry in the world powered by gas-turbines. The plan was to call the biggest and fastest ferry on earth "FINNJET". The journey time between Helsinki and Travemünde was to be cut from 36 hours and more to only 22 hours. Furthermore the smaller units like "Finnpartner" and "Finnhansa" had to be replaced. The yearly passenger-volume was expected to be 305.000. The costs of this unique project were almost as high as 300 Million Finnish Marks and so Finnjet was one of the biggest investments in finnish tourism trade ever. Since the building owner was the forest-industry giant Enso-Gutzeit, the huge costs of the project were compared with a buy of a small pulp mill! For the designing of the ship, the designers of the shipyard spent more than 200.000 hours of work in the next 12 months.

Photo: Wärtsilä, own collection

© Salomon Kaukiainen, Mathias Saken 2001-2004