VLISSINGEN _ Superyacht maker Amels marked its centennial this year with 3 milestones: in July, it delivered the world’s first new-built yacht meeting the International Maritime Organization’s tougher nitrogen-oxide emission norms for +500GT yachts. The 57.7m Volpini 2 (photo) is also Amels’ first new 188ft design. And it is also its first hybrid propulsion yacht. Amels will show the yacht at Monaco (Sept. 26-29).

Amels Commercial Director Rose Damen says her yard’s in-house design and engineering teams began developing the Amels 188 in 2014. That was 2 years before the IMO, the UN safe shipping agency, enacted stricter NOx emission limits off North America’s east and west coasts and the US Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico coasts.

It also lowered sulfur-oxide emission limits in above ‘emission control areas,’ but they don’t apply to superyachts because they don’t burn the dirty, gooey stuff that powers commercial vessels.

The IMO’s so-called Tier III exhaust norms slash NOx emissions by 75% in North American and Caribbean waters that are popular superyacht destinations.

“More zones are expected to follow, perhaps even the Mediterranean,” says Amels Design Manager Hans Konings. With the delivery of the Volpini 2, “we are looking further ahead to anticipate the demands of our future clients,” he adds. “What began as a challenge for our industry just a few years ago is now becoming standard practice.”

The Volpini 2 is Amels’ first hybrid power yacht packing a combination of energy sources _ including engine heat recovery and a smart generator configuration _ to boost efficiency and cut emissions. “We developed smart power management that automatically adjusts the balance of engines and battery power for optimal efficiency and lowest fuel use,” says Konings.

“As a result, we have a solid analytical basis for potential operating cost savings of €100,000 or more a year,” he adds.

The 970GT Volpini 2 has a 10.6m (35ft.) beam packing high-ceiling interiors. Its owner’s suite has a 12 sq. m. folding balcony (130 sq. ft.). There are 6 suites, including a bridge deck VIP suite, a sun deck lounge accessed by a central staircase and elevator, a beach club and wellness area with stairs to the main saloon. The yacht’s exterior design is by Tim Heywood. A longtime Amels partner. The interior Amels’ first collaboration with  designer Reymond Langton