ZATSUYOSEN!

Argentina Maru Class


(OSK Liner ARGENTINA MARU, prewar)

This class consisted of ARGENTINA and BRASIL MARUs, both completed in 1939 for the Osaka Shosen Kaisha (OSK) Line. The impending war destined these two streamlined ships to lead very short careers on the commercial runs for which they were designed. After only one year on the westbound round the world service to South America via the Cape of Good Hope, they both were assigned to Kobe Dairen, Manchuria runs for safety. In May '41, both liners were requisitioned by the IJN as auxiliary transports. With their defeat at Midway and the loss of four fleet carriers, the IJN decided to convert both ships to escort carriers. ARGENTINA MARU was so converted and renamed KAIYO. On her way to Yokosuka for conversion in Aug '42, BRASIL MARU was torpedoed and sunk by an American submarine, NW of Truk, Carolines.

Builder and Year Completed: Mitsubishi Zosensho, Nagasaki, 1939
Gross Tonnage: ARGENTINA MARU 12,759 tons
BRASIL MARU 12,752 tons
Dimensions: 515.8' x 68.9' x 41.3'
Propulsion: 2 Mitsubishi-Sulzer diesels, 2 shafts, 18,000 SHP shp.
Speed: 17.2 knots cruising, 21.4 knots max.
Armament:
ARGENTINA MARU: 2-12cm, 2-single 7.7mm
BRASIL MARU: 2-12cm, 2-single 13mm