Rolling stock

12.06.18

First TPE bullet train arrives in the UK

The first of TransPennine Express’ (TPE’s) Nova 1 bullet trains has completed its two-month journey from Japan today, set to come into action across the north of England and Scotland next year.

The 19 new five-carriage trains will be part of TPE’s introduction of three new fleets into service, providing 13 million more seats a year.

Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, York, Newcastle, and Edinburgh are amongst the cities that the bullet trains will travel to, with people being able to catch a first glimpse of the trains this summer when it begins testing in the north.

The trains will provide 161 additional seats compared to the existing TPE trains. Each new train will offer fast, free Wi-Fi in both standard and first class as well as complimentary on-board entertainment system, Exstream, allowing customers to stream the latest movies and TV shows during their journey.

Train offload 2

Japan’s bullet-train technology will be hybrid, meaning they can switch mid-journey between electric and diesel power. They will run in either five or 10 carriage formations, capable of speeds up to 140mph.

Using Rolls Royce’s MTU engines, the trains will cut harmful emissions under diesel power by up 90%.

Berry Sas, projects director for Hitachi Rail Europe, said: “Today is another important milestone as we deliver pioneering new trains for millions of passengers in the north and Scotland. We will begin our rigorous test programme in the coming weeks, which I’m sure will excite passengers and enthusiasts along the route.”

The investment in these new trains is supporting of jobs across the UK through Hitachi’s decision to choose over 30 UK firms to supply key components. Businesses chosen include Lucchini Unipart Rail (LUR), whose Manchester factory will build wheel sets for the trains.

The fleet will also support long-term jobs at depots along the route, including Hitachi’s newly built £80m depot in Doncaster.

Director at Port of Southampton, Alastair Welch, said: “We are delighted to welcome these five carriages into the Port of Southampton. While more familiar with the imports and exports of automotive and bulk we were pleased to assist these high-speed locomotives with the next stage in their journey.”  

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