Latest Rail News

25.11.16

Vivarail Class 230 to start mainline testing

Vivarail’s prototype Class 230 has been sent off for mainline testing prior to entering service on the Coventry to Nuneaton (NUCKLE) line.

The 230-001 set off by road from the Quinton Rail Technology Centre yesterday to Tyseley Locomotive Works, where it will undergo the testing.

Once the testing is complete, the two cars will be joined by a third middle car, which has been designed to showcase a variety of interior layouts, including a Universal Access Toilet, with different seating and door styles.

After mileage accumulation and crew training, London Midland will begin operating the train on the NUCKLE line.

Adrian Shooter, CEO of Vivarail, said: “This is a very proud day for the whole team who have worked tirelessly to prepare our prototype train. We have had a few setbacks along the way, unsurprising on a project of this scale, but today shows what can be achieved with determination, skill and pure hard work.

“What we are providing is a brand new, state of the art train, made affordable by re-using the bodyshells and bogies, and able to be in service six months after order.  It’s the train I dreamt of commissioning years ago!”

He added that the Class 230s, which are built from upcycled bodyshells and bogies from the D78s, feature stop-start engines, designed to save fuel, and are maintainable on the trackside.

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Comments

Manchester Mike   25/11/2016 at 13:38

This is the train I so desperately need.

Andrew Gwilt   25/11/2016 at 13:55

Few more Class 230's could be used on that line.

Huguenot   25/11/2016 at 14:28

Good luck to A Shooter & Co. I hope that it is a success. Would have preferred the exhaust to go up in the air rather than be emitted low down (just think of when the unit is in a platform). Nevertheless, with delayed electrification schemes there should be lots of scope for low-cost diesels like this -- pity Northern was prevented by the DfT from having them.

Matthew Read   26/11/2016 at 19:46

Hope they end up in the South West as I go there regularly for holidays so it would be nice to ride them there :)

Roger Capel, Sheffield & Glossop   28/11/2016 at 08:12

With yet more GWML wiring delays & the knock-on effect on rolling stock cascade. I suspect that the locals in the Southwest may welcome 230 to relieve them of banging along on Pacers (143). Unlike us in the north, they've no official target date for replacement. Pity the punters in the Welsh Valleys, who look like they're stuck with the damned things for a good while yet. As the 142s (all steel) are now rust buckets, can they expect an influx of (aluminium bodied) 143s / 144s?

James Miller   29/11/2016 at 19:38

I wish the team all success and I can't wait to ride the prototype. I rode one of remaining D78 trains a couple of months ago to Upminster and although some things were a bit worn, the trains rode well and the large windows are better than many other trains. They were a good design of their time, as was the Mark 3 coach and because the design and structure of both has stood the ravages of time, the D78 could scrub up as well as a Mark 3 has for Chiltern, Greater Anglia and GWR. If the train is a success and the team run riot with clever and worthwhile ideas, I have a feeling that train design will never be the same again. There are also some newer fleets out there, which will be replaced soon, that may be good enough to rebuild as new variants Bombardier have stated that the Class 377 could be fitted with on-board energy storage. Could this be created to dig Network Rail out of their electrification hole? I have a feeling that the Class 230 could be the first of many unusual but worthwhile and affordable designs of new trains!

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