The comprehensive chemical description of air pollution is a prerequisite for understanding atmospheric transformation processes and effects on climate and environmental health. In this study, a prototype vacuum photoionization Orbitrap mass spectrometer was evaluated for field-suitability by an online on-site investigation of emissions from a ship diesel engine. Despite remote measurements in a challenging environment, the mass spectrometric performance could fully be exploited. Due to the high resolution and mass accuracy in combination with resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionization, the aromatic hydrocarbon profile could selectively and sensitively be analyzed. Limitations from commonly deployed time-of-flight platforms could be overcome, allowing to unraveling the oxygen- and sulfur-containing compounds. Scan-by-scan evaluation of the online data revealed no shift in exact m/z, assignment statistics with root mean square error (RMSE) below 0.2 ppm, continuous high-resolution capabilities, and good isotopic profile matches. Emissions from three different feed fuels were investigated, namely, diesel, heavy fuel oil (HFO), and very low sulfur fuel oil (VLSFO). Regulations mainly concern the fuel sulfur content, and thus, exhaust gas treatment or new emerging fuels, such as the cycle-oil-based VLSFO, can legally be applied. Unfortunately, despite lower CHS-class emissions, a substantial amount of PAHs is emitted by the VLSFO with higher aromaticity compared to the HFO. Hence, legislative measures might need to take further chemical criteria into account.