Latest Rail News

11.06.20

SWR welcomes new £1bn fleet

The first of South Western Railway’s near £1bn new fleet of modern suburban trains has arrived on the network ahead of a full programme of testing beginning next month.  

The 10-car Class 701 trains are the first of the new 90 strong fleet to arrive on SWR’s network.

Situated at Eastleigh, the train will be commissioned as part of Bombardier’s network testing regime to gain Office for Road and Rail (OOR) certification for full passenger usage ahead of the fleet being presented later this year.

From next month, SWR’s full programme of testing is also expected to commence. SWR will evaluate new systems designed specifically for the Class 701 trains, including new communications systems, sensitive edge doors, environmentally friendly toilets, regenerative braking and onboard features like Wi-Fi and at-seating charging points.

SWR have stated that the Class 701s signifies a huge investment in more state-of-the-art, faster and reliable services, and supports their commitment to transform passengers’ everyday experiences of travelling on the network.

Fitted with the latest technology, these new trains will help more passengers arrive on time in the morning and evening peak periods, to and from London Waterloo, on one of Europe’s busiest rail networks.

SWR’s Commercial Projects Director, Alex Foulds, said: “I’m delighted to see us achieving another major milestone. The programme is gathering pace and we’re entering an important phase of the project as we begin real-world testing on our network ahead of the trains entering passenger service later this year.

“We’ve been working hard with Bombardier to ensure that these trains are fit and ready to transform journeys for suburban passengers.” 

Bombardier’s Director of Communications, Will Tanner, said: “We are delighted to see the first of these British-designed and built trains leave the factory at Derby. It has been a great team effort by all involved.

“Network testing can now begin on these cutting-edge trains, which is another important step towards passenger service.”

Images: South Western Railway 

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