Swedish electric boat maker Candela has introduced the world’s first electric hydrofoiling water taxi, a 12-person boat that the company claims will cost operators 85% less than running a traditional combustion engine vessel.
And, for the first time, thanks to a 95% reduction in wave g-force compared to conventional vessels, Candella boasts its P-12 marks “the very end of sea sickness.”
Candela, primarily known for its Candela C-7 electric hydrofoiling speedboat – which boasts a range of 50 nautical miles and a top seed of 30 knots, all with zero emissions – unveiled its new Candela P-12 water taxi at the end of May.
The Candela P-12, like its name suggests, seats twelve passengers in a hydrofoiling boat that is powered by an electric pod motor, allowing the vessel to cruise in almost total silence. A hydrofoil boat, which mounts a winglike strut or struts below the boat, lifts above the water level and is propelled by an underwater propeller.
The unique effect of a hydrofoil means that the boat does not continually slam into the waves, leaves no wake or sound pollution, and as such also goes a long way to minimising disturbance for marine wildlife.
Able to reach speeds of 30 knots and with an electric range of 45 nautical miles (travelling at 20 knots) – which converts to around 85-kilometres – the Candela P-12 is billed as one of the first electric water taxis to be able to cover long routes at high speeds.
This is supplemented by DC fast charging which is able to fully charge the battery in under an hour.
Similarly impressive is the fact that both the boat’s main and aft foils can be retracted for running in shallow waters, or for storing the boat on dry land. When in operation, the computer-controlled hydrofoils help reduce energy consumption by 80% while maintaining high speeds and passenger comfort.
“Switching from a combustion engine to an electric boat shouldn’t be a tough decision,” the company said in a statement. “With P-12, there’s no trade-off between economy and environment.”
Candela’s P-12 not only consumes less energy per passenger than a family car – a fact which is likely not particularly relevant for most landlocked residents, but is nevertheless instructive – but, in a market where gasoline costs €0.6 per litre, the P-12 will cost 85% less than a comparable combustion engine water taxi.
And, while landlocked cities and regions without any marine transport needs might not see a need for water taxis, one need only look at Australia’s major cities and its many rivers and harbours to see the potential benefit and attractiveness of a silent-running electric water taxi such as the P-12.