Our new ferry fleet

KiwiRail is replacing it's current ferry fleet with two new rail-enabled hybrid-electric ferries from 2025.

In preparation for our new fleet, we are upgrading and modernising the ferry terminal precincts in Waitohi Picton and Kaiwharawhara Wellington.

We are committed to working together with local community, our project partners and Mana Whenua at every stage of the project to be a good neighbour, bring them on the journey, and leave a lasting legacy for future generations.

Our Mana Whenua partners Taranaki Whānui ki Te Upoko o Te Ika, Ngāti Toa Rangitara and Te Ātiawa o Te Waka-a-Māui are central to shaping the look and feel of this project, from design to community engagement. Te Au o Rehutai, a new unified Mana Whenua governance and advisory group was established in March 2022 to guide and inform the project.

KiwiRail Te Au O Rehutai Tohu Logo K RGB
Updated Kaitaki 768x430

Why new ferries?

  • It is over 20 years since Aotearoa New Zealand introduced a brand-new purpose-built ferry to its fleet.
  • The two new Interislander ferries will be more efficient and support KiwiRail’s goal to reduce carbon emissions by 30 per cent by 2030 and be carbon neutral by 2050.
  • They are expected to cater for 30 years’ of freight and passenger growth, carrying twice as many passengers as the current three ship fleet, 300 per cent more rail wagons and almost double the number of trucks and other vehicles.
  • The arrival of the new ferries has triggered an exciting redevelopment of the Interislander ferry precincts in Waitohi Picton and Kaiwharawhara Wellington.

Our new terminals

The new Interislander ferry terminals will support sustainable growth and provide for a world-class travel experience.

The new ferry precincts will enhance and strengthen their respective gateways into the North and South Islands. The project provides KiwiRail with an opportunity to showcase the area’s unique stories and Mana Whenua while providing a balance of social, environmental, and economic benefits.

The new terminal facilities will aim to lift environmental performance, deliver better customer experience, and celebrate Aotearoa’s rich culture and history.

Find out more

For more information and updates on the iReX (the Inter-island resilient connection) project visit the iReX website.

Sign up to the iReX newsletter here for updates on the progress of the new ferries and terminals.