- Helping you drive happy

2,862 Luxury Vehicles Lost At Sea

Get the best interest rate
Khatir Soltani

All 24 Crewmembers Saved but 2,862 Luxury Vehicles Drowned

The Tricolor capsized shortly before submerging.

During incidents like these it's important to think positively. At least the Tricolor, a car carrier operated by Wallenius Wilhelmsen (W&W) Lines of Oslo, Norway, wasn't filled to its 5,830 vehicle capacity and most importantly, all 24 crewmembers were saved.

Just the same 2,862 U.S.-bound Volvos, Saabs and BMWs and 77 containers of miscellaneous goods were lost, a treasure trove that might be worth diving for. But while a salvage company has sent a ship with divers on board to try to find a way of removing the wreck that lies in approximately 25 m (82 ft) of water, salvage experts are fairly certain that all the cars will need to be written off. The estimated value of the cargo is about $74 million CAD while the Tricolor is estimated to worth approximately $62 million CAD.

The Tricolor on its side just prior to submerging in 25 m (82 ft) of water.

But the cars were insured, right? That's true, but only for about $70 million, according to W&W. That's about $24,360 apiece, not quite enough to cover the cost of these luxury models.

The car carrier sailed from Zeebrugge, Belgium, on December 13th, the beginning of one of a routine round-the-globe voyage. At approximately 1:25 AM (0130 GMT) on December 14th the Tricolor was rammed by another freight ship, the Bahamian-registered Kariba, amid dense fog. The Kariba limped back to port with a crushed bow but the Tricolor sank shortly after the accident.

Khatir Soltani
Khatir Soltani
Automotive expert
As a car enthusiast, he tests and compares vehicles from different categories through the eyes of the consumer, ensuring relevant and objective reviews.
  • Over 6 years experience as a car reviewer
  • Over 50 test drives in the last year
  • Involved in discussions with virtually every auto manufacturer in Canada