Latest Rail News

21.11.18

After five-month delay, Siemens and London Underground sign £1.5bn Deep Tube train contract

After almost six months of delay due to a long-running legal challenge, Siemens Mobility Ltd has formally signed the contract to design and build 94 brand-new Tube trains to replace the existing 1970s fleet running on London’s Piccadilly Line.

The contract, awarded by London Underground, is worth a whopping £1.5bn and will ensure new trains are on the Underground’s tracks from 2024.

The deal will also facilitate the multimillion-pound construction of a Siemens factory in Goole, East Yorkshire, which the company has promised will spur thousands of new jobs.

Originally awarded in June this year, the contract faced delays after rivals Bombardier and Hitachi decided to launch legal proceedings against TfL over its decision. The two transport giants felt TfL failed to follow the proper procurement process in its awarding of the deal.

But earlier this month, Judge Mrs Justice O’Farrell ruled that Siemens and London Underground could go ahead with the signing and lifted the suspension on the contract.

Today, Siemens announced it has finally signed the deal to replace the old, increasingly unreliable, and expensive fleet. They will be replaced by more spacious ‘Inspiro London’ trains which will be delivered for testing on the line in 2023 ahead of service the following year. 

As well as helping increasing peak-time frequency by the end of 2026 – from 24 to 27 trains per hour – the deal will mean wider doors, longer walk-through carriages, air conditioning, and in-train information systems.

The initial order covers 94 trains and an associated Fleet Services Agreement covering the supply of spares and whole-life technical support. This was awarded with the expectation that Siemens Mobility will build trains for all four Deep Tube lines, including Piccadilly, Bakerloo, Central, and Waterloo & City.

According to Siemens, a single train design will allow for better standardisation of train operations, staff training, equipment, spares, and maintenance— thus cutting down on costs.

Nigel Holness, London Underground managing director, said: “The introduction of new trains on the Piccadilly line will significantly improve the journeys of millions of our customers, providing more frequent and more reliable trains for decades to come. This order will mean the replacement of the 1970s Piccadilly line fleet, with delivery of the new trains in 2023, and will help address crowding on the line as London’s population continues to rise.”

William Wilson, managing director of rolling stock at Siemens Mobility, added: “These state-of-the-art trains, which are track-friendly and futureproofed for a long life, will transform the travel experience for the 700,000 daily Piccadilly Lie passengers.”

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