The new Volvo Penta D13 takes the Volvo Penta IPS transmissions to semi-displacement large yachts. It required new electronics and new propellers.
Volvo Penta’s IPS has been on the market for almost 15 years already, and it is definitely a commercial success. But this doesn’t mean that Volvo is resting on their laurels. On the contrary, the Swedish manufacturer has kept evolving the system all these years, introducing the second generation just a few months ago, and developing the front-facing transmissions for larger and larger engines (and yachts). Now, they debut on large semi-displacement vessels. Which could seem a bit counterintuitive, as IPS was made for best efficiency on planing hulls. But never say never: here’s the Volvo Penta D13 IPS1350 SD.
More torque where it’s needed
Needless to say, the last two letters mean Semi Displacement. The engine is the big D13, an inline six normally available in two displacements, 10.8 and 12.8 liters, and two powersteps: 900 and 1000 hp. In this case the choice is only for the larger one, and the name IPS1350 of course means the comparable power needed in case of traditional transmissions.
The new edition Volvo D13 torque curve has been modified to cope with higher thrust loads at slower speeds, as requested by displacing or semi-displacing yachts. The D13 IPS 1350 SD also has a wider speed range down to 19 knots, where on the standard version it is at 25 knots.
With the new edition of the D13 engine also comes the introduction of two new propellers belonging to the Q-series: they’re named QS4 and QS5 and both will only be allowed for use with the new D13 IPS 1350 SD.
One of the points of the new edition D13 propulsion system is that a wider range of boaters can now use the IPS features. The key advantages of the Volvo Penta IPS, compared to inboard shaft installations, are well known to many: increased comfort, better fuel efficiency and longer range.
As an integrated marine propulsion system, the Volvo Penta IPS also delivers an intuitive onboard experience. The individually steerable IPS drives, controlled by the joystick, return a responsive handling in navigation and precise control when maneuvering and docking. This allows boaters to navigate in tight spaces, perform rather difficult maneuvers, and maintain good stability in rougher sea conditions.
Volvo Penta decided to enter the semi-displacement segment as one of the trends nowadays is for larger and slower yachts. And actually we are going to see already some yachts with the D13 IPS1350 SD: Absolute Navetta 73, ISA 93 Extra, Arcadia Sherpa XL, and the upcoming Mangusta 33.
The time will tell us if this further expansion of the IPS range is another success from Volvo.