Note: This old webpage was due for deletion due to the fact that the Viking oil tanker is no longer in existence, however, it has been left online for posterity.

Finally named Mont  by its new Indian owners from 2009 until 2010.  Below is a  Youtube video of workers aboard this ship, she truly was the King of the seas...

She was the worlds largest ship ever to sail the seas and had been renamed a fair few times as too:

2009 - 2010.........Mont

2004 - 2009.........Nock Nevis

  • 1991 - 2004..........Jahre Viking

  • 1989 - 1991..........Happy Giant

  • 1979 - 1989........Seawise Giant


The Mont was the worlds largest ship at 1504 feet long (over 1/4 of a mile) and 226 feet wide.

The Mont, a ship so huge that when fully laden she can not pass through the 32 mile wide English channel because it cannot manoeuvre, as travelling in a straight line is its best forte.

When fully laden, she sits 24.5 meters deep in the sea, a depth great enough to stop her from accessing most of the world’s major ports. The photo below is of her when she was the Jahre Viking and she is loaded to full capacity with oil, hence she sits low in the water.

Making big waves, the 'Jahre Viking' as she was know then, at full steam ahead !

Specific Details

When fully laden with the capacity of 4,240,865 barrels of oil the Mont has a displacement of 825,614 GLW (Gross Laden Weight) metric tons. It has an  un-laden weight is 564,763 tons.

The hold could swallow St Pauls cathedral four times over. It has a crew of 35 to 40, which means it only needs two lifeboats. Taking 5.5 miles to stop with a turning circle of over 2 miles.  When this ship docks into its port it is done so very slowly as mistakes cannot easily be rectified when there is so much weight on the move.

The cargo of oil she normally carries is worth $122 million ! separated from the sea by just 3.5cm's of steel plate !  It is mainly crewed by Indian Officers and Filipino seamen. In comparison to other ships, the Mont rules the waves !

The chart above proves that amongst the worlds largest ships The Mont is the true king of the seas. 



In the course of her life the Mont has changed hands many times. It was launched in Japan at Sumitomo Heavy Industries Yard at Opera in 1979 with the hull number of 1016. She was christened Seawise Giant. 

After three years of use the owner who was a Greek shipping magnate went bankrupt and sold her to another Shipping magnate, C.Y Tung Industries. But before taking delivery however, her new owner ordered that the length be increased.

Already massive at 480,000 tonnes, he ordered that her length be increased several more metres to add another 87,000 tons to her load-carrying capacity to make her, at 825,614 GLW tons, the largest ship ever be built and sail the seas.

Two years later, in 1981, she was finally ready to be put to sea still under the name of the Seawise Giant.  At this time though the two major oil-producing states of Iran and Iraq were at war. And any ship carrying Iranian or Arab oil, in effect every tanker using the Persian Gulf, the source of most of the world’s oil, was seen as a legitimate military target by Iraq.

The Super tanker 'Seawise Giant' sailed without hassle in the Gulf Of Mexico, sometimes it even doubled as a storage facility. However she was soon needed in the Persian Gulf to ply her trade as a transporter of much needed oil. This  however put the ship into danger.

It was not long before the ship was sighted and subsequently attacked. While sailing the Hormuz Straits in 1986, she was targeted by Iraqi jets, who fired Exocet missiles into her hull. The Sea Wise Giant never had a chance, she erupted into flame as the oil onboard ignited with the explosion.

Extensively damaged, she sank in the very shallow waters off Iran’s Kharg Island.  And it was there that she stayed for the remainder of the war. She might have sat indefinitely had it not been for the fact that she was still worth a lot of money even in the damaged state she was in.

The main factor in her salvage and repair was the fact that she could still float, had she sunk in deeper waters then she would most probably still be at the bottom of the sea today as it would have been next to impossible to have brought her to the surface.

In 1989 she was sold to the company of Norman International in Norway for $35 million. Repair work began in 1990 in Keppel shipyard in Singapore where 3,700 tons of damaged steel was replaced. This repair work was still infinitely cheaper than building another ship of the same size.

Surprisingly she was not utilised much by Norman International and was again sold on this time to Jorden Jahre for a sum of $39 Million. It was at this stage that the ship was renamed Jahre Viking after its new owner.

The vessel was then given to the world’s largest and best ship company, Wallem Ship-Management from Hong Kong for upgrading and refurbishment. After final completion, she was ready to sail. And in 1991, she loaded her first cargo of 4 million barrels of crude oil at Juaymah, Saudi Arabia. Today, she runs regular trips between the Middle East and the US.

The Mont has received extensive media coverage in its lifetime and more recently it was one of the topics that BBC TV presenter Jeremy Clarkson covered in a program called  Extreme Machines  the ship was then known as The Jahre Viking of course.

In March 2004, Jahre Viking was sent by its new owner, First Olsen Tankers, to the Dubai dry docks to be refitted as a floating storage and offloading unit.   Under the new name of Knock Nevis, she began operating at the Al Shaheen oilfield in waters of Qatar

The true size of this ship can be a little better appreciated as she sits in the docks.  Sadly the Mont was finally sailed to India and scrapped in 2010, her 36 ton Anchor however, was preserved and sent to the Hong Kong maritime museum for public display.

The Future Of Big Ships

The Worlds largest ship EVER that will dwarf the Mont will be called  Freedom  It is proposed to be ONE MILE long and 25 stories tall from the waterline, and will displace an estimated 2.7 million tons.

Proposed Statistics.

Length: Approximately 1 mile.  Width: 3 city blocks (4,320 feet) Height: 25 stories.  Weight: 3 million tons.  Volume: Titanic, Queen Mary, USS Nimitz and the super-tanker Jahre Viking could all fit  inside, although not at the same time. Population onboard: 50,000 residents, 15,000 workers, including 20,000 visitors/day.  Construction: Hull composed of 600 120'x100' steel cells bolted together.  Location: Freedom would completely circle the world every two years.  Closest Living Relative: Japan's Megafloat Airport, Tokyo Bay, 1km long, 70 meters wide, 20 meters depth. Power : 100 electric 360 degree podded  propellers at 3500 horsepower each.  Cost: an estimated $9 Billion.

The hull of the ship will be flat similar to a barge and the propellers will be situated all along this flat hull in rows. The propellers will be directional in that they will have the ability to turn on their axis 360 degrees as opposed to having a rudder for steering.

It is estimated that they shall propel the ship at a speed of 10 knots maximum.  The latest news though is that due to rising costs the construction of this ship is on hold, the latest figures are around 12 Billion dollars.  This kind of money is on par to the entire spending capital of some of the worlds countries !

Artistic Images of 'Freedom'.

The ship if it ever gets constructed will dwarf any other ship many times over.

Sadly though, this gigantic ship might only ever been seen as an artists impression. It is great having the vision and idea for these fantastic conceptions but having the money to make them a reality is another dimension that is sometimes hard to manifest.




Page created October 21st 2002.   Updated October 21st 2012