Ro/Ro Allemagna Express

ADRIATICA RoRo Allemagna Express 01_Emmanuel L. Stafrace 16Ap83

Photo © Emmanuel L. Stafrace, Valletta, 16/04/83 #13144



Allemagna Express (1976)

Charter 1976-78

Building Spec.

Hayashikane Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Ltd.,

Shimonoseki, Japan, 1976 – N° 1197

Call Sign


IMO Number







147,61 x 22,84 x 6,6


1 Mitsubishi – MAN 16V52-55 4S, 11.768 kW


20 knots (22,4 max)







Lane Metres


Sister Ships

Hellenic Carrier (scrapped in 2010)

Hellenic Trader (scrapped in 2013)

Italroro Two (scrapped in 2011)

Italroro Three (scrapped in 2011)

Registry Port




Former Names/Own.

Allemagna Express – Società Mototraghetti Mediterranea 1976-78

New Names/Own.

RoRo Italia – Tirrenia Navigazione 1986-88

Sardegna – Tirrenia Navigazione 1988-12/2006

Italroro One – Italroro / Puglia Navigazione 12/2006-06/2011

Scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey 08/2011




Launched on June 1st, 1976, was delivered three months later to the owner, sailing from Shimonoseki to Nagoya, Singapore, Djibouti, Suez, Benghazi, Tripoli, before arriving in Naples, carrying more than 400 cars from Japan to Europe. Second vessel of the Japanese series ordered by the Catania-based shipowner Russotti, the “Allemagna Express” was chartered for five years to Adriatica Navigazione, to serve Northern European lines; the names chosen by the company are reflecting these employments: this one, “Allemagna”, is related to Germany, “Anglia” to England, while “Serenissima” is the famous nickname of Venice. The charter agreement originates from the problems with the Workers Unions of that time, which wanted the three sisters to be built in Italy, rather than abroad, even if the Japanese shipyards offered a much lower price than the best offer of Italcantieri yards. The charter fee, anyway, was soon investigated because it was too high, bringing to these three ro/ros the nickname of “Golden Ferries” given by the media. The Italian Minister of Mercantile Marine, Gioia, was investigated, but later acquitted; Adriatica, instead, was forced to buy the vessels from the Sicilian shipowner. After the end of North European services, the “Allemagna Express” was transferred to Venice – Middle East line, and, in the middle of 80’s, due to the increasing demand for lorry transport to Sardinia, started sailing for Tirrenia as the “RoRo Italia”, maintaining her distinctive “golden sand” hull colour but having her St. Mark’s lion removed from the funnel, replaced by Tirrenia’s logo; before that service, anyway, she served the Italy – USA line for Italia di Navigazione. In 1988 the Finmare group, parent company of both Tirrenia and Adriatica, decided to definitively transfer the three Japanese sisters to Tirrenia, and the present ferry finally got the full Tirrenia livery and changes her name in “Sardegna”, being the first vessel adopting the new naming policy of the company, calling its cargo vessels after Italian regions. Under Tirrenia colours, had an uneventful career, except for a grounding in 1989, when, sailing with an unusual course due to Military operations, had a grounding near Murtas, and the engine room was flooded; the ferry, which started to sink, was salvaged and then towed at Genoa, where was repaired and returned to her usual services, sailing from the mainland ports of Genoa, Leghorn, Civitavecchia and Naples to Sardinia and Sicily. In 2006, after the delivery of new passenger vessels with greater space for cargo, the three sisters were put on sale by the Italian State-owned company, and delivered at the end of 2006 to an Apulian group, Italroro – Puglia di Navigazione, which changes the name of the vessel to “Italroro One” and the registry port to Bari. This group started a new service from Bari to Canakkale, a Turkish port on the Dardanelles, but this line proves to be unprofitable, so Italroro decided to put the vessel on the charter market. The first charter brings back the “Italroro One” to her first Italian homeport, Venice, from where she served Corinth, in Greece, sailing against her earlier sisters, operated by Hellenic Seaways on the same service. Later, the ferry was deployed also on oceanic services to Africa, linking Genoa with Senegal; back from one of these voyages, a Guinean stowaway was discovered on board, and was reported to the Italian authorities upon arrival at Genoa as long as the Spanish authorities of Canary islands, where he was reported the first time, refused to let him disembark from the vessel. Also the Italian authorities refused him the right to disembark, and notified to the Master the order to bring him back to Senegal. The ferry, anyway, remained at Genoa for a long period, being rebuilt with the scrapping of upper garage’s roofing, and the Guinean man reimained imprisoned in a cabin, which was converted in a jail cell. This situation was discovered by some yard workers, and finally he was liberated, when this story was published on local press. On autumn 2008, the “Italroro One” arrived in Toulon, where she had to start a charter with OM-Roroline, a Tunisian-Dutch owned company which wanted to employ her on a new service to Tunisia. Few days before the maiden voyage, anyway, the crew of the “Italroro One” obtained her arrest, due to some unpaid wages; this made the Italroro crisis to broke out. OM-Roroline was anyway interested to charter the entire Italroro fleet and, after these difficulties, tried to buy all the vessels of the company. Initially this seemed to happen and, on December 2008, OM-Roroline announced the purchase of the vessels; the agreement anyway didn’t came to an end, and finally the company gave up in February 2009. This means the end for Italroro, and for the next two and half years the vessels of the company were regularly auctioned in Italian courts. On June 2011, the ferry was finally sold to Aliaga breakers, and, after three years, she left Toulon on August 23rd, towed by the tug “Spartan” to her last destination.


Photo Gallery



Caralis, 21/10/1988


Yvon Perchoc





TIRRENIA RoRo Sardegna 06_Personale 17Ot05

TIRRENIA RoRo Sardegna 07_Personale 17Ot05

Leghorn, 17/10/2005

Leghorn, 17/10/2005

Michele Lulurgas

Michele Lulurgas


TIRRENIA NAVIGAZIONE – Sardegna (1988-2006)



ITALRORO RoRo Italroro One 08_Personale 02Ma08

ITALRORO RoRo Italroro One 09_Personale 02Ma08

Genoa, 02/03/2008

Genoa, 02/03/2008

Michele Lulurgas

Michele Lulurgas





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