Fares, rail policy and DfT news

04.03.19

Stadler to build 71 trains for Wales and Borders railway

Transport for Wales (TfW) has awarded a contract to build 71 new trains for the Wales & Borders railway franchise.

The contract is to deliver 36 three-car CityLink tram trains, the same model which debuted in Sheffield last year; and 35 FLIRT units for TfW Rail Services, with a mix of tri-mode and diesel-operated rolling stock.

Around 11 of the 35 fast light intercity and regional trains (FLIRT) will be diesel operated and will run on South Wales Metro services, whilst the other 24 trains will be tri-mode.

These units will be capable of running on diesel, overhead electric wires, and battery power, consisting of seven three-car and 17 four-car trains.

The tri-mode rolling stock will come ‘on-stream’ in 2023, powered by electricity to the north of Cardiff and diesel to the south.

Stadler said the use of batteries on tram-trains and tri-modes will be an innovative and cost-effective way of providing fully electric services, enabling ‘smart electrification’ of the infrastructure.

Kevin Thomas, chief executive officer of TfW Rail Services, said: “Our journey has begun and we are all absolutely determined to create a transport network that is fit for the future.

“It’s really exciting to know that Cardiff will see the return of a tram operation for the first time in over 70 years, while the tri-modes being built by Stadler will offer an efficient and cost-effective electric drive and battery operation. 2022 can’t come soon enough for us or our passengers.”

Ralf Warwel, UK sales director at Stadler, said that Stadler was delighted to be supplying the 71 state-of-the-art new trains for TfW.

“This order will bolster our presence in Great Britain and we look forward to working with our clients in Wales.

“With its emphasis on battery power, the project puts us at the forefront of cutting edge, green technology, and we are especially proud of that.”

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