Rolling stock

20.08.18

Hitachi Class 802s to be put in operation following GWR press launch

Train operator Greater Western Railway (GWR) launched its new Hitachi Class 802 range on Friday, holding a media run from Penzance to Exeter to celebrate the new fleet.

The 36-strong batch of Hitachi bi-mode trains began its operation with the media event, marking the beginning of its life on services when it is introduced one-by-one on routes between London Paddington to Exeter, Paignton, Plymouth, and Penzance.

GWR have said half of the 200km/h diesel and electric trains are now in Britain, and the driver training programme to bring operating staff up to speed on the new vehicles is at its midpoint. Hitachi has also said the final train is now on the production line at Pistoia and will be ready for delivery in January.

Of the 36 total trains being produced, 22 will be five-car vehicle, and the remaining 14 will be nine-car sets. Inside the new trains, the nine-car vehicle will seat 647 people in total, with four wheelchair spaces.

New on-board technology will include real-time journey updates and seat reservation screens will also be available to passengers using the route. 

GWR manging director Mark Hopwood said: “Already delivering significant improvements elsewhere on the GWR network, these new trains will, with an improved timetable, enable us to offer a step change in passenger transport.

“The trains will help us deliver faster, more frequent services into the south west, each providing up to 24% more seats per train, in greater comfort and with improved on-board facilities.”

The project is being financed by Eversholt Rail. The first group of Class 802s left Italy in February to be used on routes in Devon and Cornwall.

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Image credit: GWR

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