Luxury houseboat with electric Torqeedo drive and its own PV system | –

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The Kiebitzberg shipyard in Havelberg is responsible for building the ‘Kingfisher’ demonstrator, which will be equipped with the Deep Blue 50i motor and the Deep Blue Battery 80 with an energy content of 80 kWh from Torqeedo. The energy management of the consumers and energy generators on board is also handled by the Torqeedo systems.

The battery is supported by a fuel cell, which should enable a completely energy-self-sufficient stay on the water for several days with a daily journey time of four hours. In addition, the prototype is equipped with solar panels on the wide roofs of the houseboat, which can generate additional energy of up to 3 kWh per hour during longer periods of mooring, as Torqeedo advertises.

The project has been financially supported from the outset by the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs. The developer, Eichberger Schiffservice, is based in Passau, which is why the Ministry from Munich is providing funding in this case. The ‘Kingfisher’ prototype is due to be completed by September 2024, after which an extensive test phase will begin.

Eichberger Schiffservice specialises in the river cruise industry. The ‘Kingfisher’ houseboats are not necessarily intended to be sold, but rather rented out to tourists, for example. If the test phase is successful, up to ten boats are to be built in series – with the aim of expanding Eichberger Schiffservice GmbH’s portfolio to include emission-free charter houseboats in the future.

“Eichberger Schiffservice GmbH has recognized that tourists are increasingly looking for more sustainable holiday options. At Torqeedo, we are delighted to deliver our electric drive systems for a pioneering project such as the ‘Kingfisher’,” says Matthias Vogel, Senior Vice President Customised Solutions at Torqeedo.

“Thanks to Torqeedo’s many years of experience with pioneering propulsion systems, we can realize our vision of hydrogen propulsion for smaller charter boats,” explained Manfred Eichberger from Eichberger Schiffservice GmbH. “As hydrogen propulsion systems are still quite new on the water, we are working with our engineers and the relevant authorities to develop guidelines during the testing phase. Our goal is to ensure safe use on the water.”

Torqeedo has its headquarters in Oberpfaffenhofen, Bavaria, which it only moved into in 2022. However, the company itself no longer belongs to Deutz, but is now under Japanese ownership: Yamaha Motor finalised the announced takeover of Torqeedo at the beginning of April.

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