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Queen Mary vs The Queen Mary 2 – Size, Power, and Speed Comparison

When the Queen Mary was built in 1934 she was one of the most technologically advanced ships of her day. The Queen Mary 2 was built later in 2003 and she is the world’s last ocean liner.

I recently disembarked a cruise onboard the Queen Mary 2 and have also stayed on board the Queen Mary which is currently a floating hotel located in California.

Both ships set sail almost 69 years apart so there are some considerable differences between the two.

How did the Queen Mary Compare to the Queen Mary 2?

The Queen Mary 2 is 15% longer than the original Queen Mary and 14% wider. Both ships produce the same horsepower and can travel at the same maximum speed of 30 knots. The Queen Mary 2 has an additional passenger deck compared to the original Queen Mary.

Despite the time difference between the two the Queen Mary 2 isn’t any faster than the original Queen Mary was. The journey onboard is no doubt calmer, but the maximum speed remains the same.

Queen Mary 2 vs Queen Mary – Length Comparison

Cruise ShipLength (Meters)Length (Feet)
Queen Mary269m 883ft
Queen Mary 2310m1131ft
Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Length Comparison

The Queen Mary 2 is 15% longer than the original Queen Mary.

This is based on the length of the cruise ship as parallel to the waterline.

Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 Length Comparison

Queen Mary 2 vs Queen Mary – Width (Beam) Comparison

Cruise ShipWidth (Meters)Width (Feet)
Queen Mary36m 118ft
Queen Mary 241m134ft
Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Width (Beam) Comparison

The Queen Mary 2 is 14% wider than the original Queen Mary.

The beam of a cruise ship is the width of the cruise ship at the widest point. It’s usually measured where the hull meets the waterline.

Queen Mary 2 vs Queen Mary – Height and Deck Comparison

Cruise ShipHeight (Meters)Height (Feet)Decks
Queen Mary55m 180ft12
Queen Mary 271m236ft13
Queen Mary 2 vs Queen Mary 2 – Height and Deck Comparison

The Queen Mary 2 is 30% taller than the original Queen Mary but she includes an additional passenger deck. The largest cruise ship currently in operation is 72 meters (238 feet) high.

Building tall cruise ships limit the destinations which a cruise ship can travel to. Some large modern cruise ships are unable to sail to some ports due to bridges.

Queen Mary 2 vs Queen Mary – Gross Tonnage Comparison

Cruise ShipGross Tonnage
Queen Mary80,000
Queen Mary 2149,000
Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Gross Tonnage Comparison

The Queen Mary 2 has almost double the gross tonnage of the original Queen Mary.

Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 Gross Tonnage

Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Horsepower and Speed Comparison

A ship’s horsepower is the amount of power provided by the engines, one horsepower is equivalent to 746 Watts.

Cruise ShipHorsepowerMaximum Speed
Queen Mary160,00030 knots (35 MPH)
Queen Mary 2160,00030 knots (35 MPH)
Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Gross Tonnage and Speed Comparison

The Queen Mary had four turbines in two engine rooms.

The Queen Mary 2 has four diesel engines and two gas turbines.

In reality, the Queen Mary 2 sails at a little over 26 knots (30 MPH).

Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 Speed Comparison in Knots

Modern cruise ships still usually have a maximum speed of between 25-30 knots.

Both Ships Had/Have 3 Main Anchors

The Queen Mary had 3 anchors which could reach 1980ft in total.

The Queen Mary 2 also has 3 anchors.

To learn more about cruise ship anchors, check out this post: Cruise Ship Anchors – Function, Size, Weight, and Uses

Queen Mary vs Queen Mary 2 – Ship Ownership

The Queen Mary was built for the Cunard-White Star Line and the Queen Mary 2 was built for Cunard, founded as we know it in 1949.

Cunard owned 62% of the company and White Star Line 38%. Cunard bought out White Star Line in 1949 creating the Cunard brand that we know and love today.

Is The Queen Mary 2 The Sister Ship to The Original Queen Mary?

The Queen Mary 2 is not the sister ship to the Original Queen Mary. She was built 69 years after the original Queen Mary was launched. Queen Mary 2 could be described as a much much younger relative, possibly a child of the Queen Mary.

To learn more about how Titanic compares to modern cruise ships, including how the ship compares to the Royal Caribbean and Cunard fleets check out this post: Titanic vs a Modern Cruise Ship Fleet – Comparison with Photos!

If you would like to learn more about what it’s like to cruise on the Queen Mary 2, check out this video:

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