In 2001, Laborde Products introduced the first Mitsubishi mechanical engine to the inland towboat industry with the repower of the Nickie B, a 1,000-hp pushboat. Over 400 Mitsubishi mechanical engines are now in service in inland towboat, offshore tug and offshore crewboat applications. Mitsubishi mechanical engines meet stringent EPA regulations.
“When Tracy Laborde and I first visited Mitsubishi’s Sagamihara factory in 2000 we were concerned about them meeting the new Tier 2 emission standards which were facing us in 2007,” Doug Oehrlein, Laborde’s vice president of sales and marketing said in a statement. “But Mitsubishi assured us they could easily meet the new requirements and asked the simple question, ‘Do you want us to do it with mechanical or electronic governors?’ Our answer was easy. ‘Keep it mechanical as long as you can.’ “
“Mitsubishi met the Tier 2 requirements with mechanical engines while the rest of the industry moved on to electronic controls,” said Oehrlein. “We honestly assumed Mitsubishi, like the rest of the industry, would have to go electronic and common rail to meet Tier 3, but the Mitsubishi engineers have figured out a way to meet the Tier 3 requirements and keep the engines fully mechanical”
James Spalt, of Lockport, La.-based Cape Coastal Marine, chose Mitsubishi’s new Tier 3 mechanical S6R2s, a 30-liter engine rated at 803 hp at 1,400 rpm, to replace the aging Detroit 8V-149 engines that are currently in the Gulf Ranger. The Gulf Ranger is a 150’x36′ mini-supply vessel. It will be the first OSV equipped with Tier 3 Mechanical engines operating in the U.S., according to Laborde.
“I looked at all the options, and for me the big displacement simple mechanical engines, along with Mitsubishi’s success in the heavy duty inland market, told me I was making the right choice to update the Gulf Ranger. I look forward to getting these engines into service,” said Spalt.