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Alstom complete entire Virgin Pendolino fleet overhaul

The entire Virgin Pendolino fleet in the UK has undergone an overhaul in record time at a new Alstom facility.

Alstom built the bogie overhaul facility at the Longsight depot in Manchester to carry out the work, allowing them to overhaul an entire set of bogies for either a nine-car or eleven-care train in five days, and overhaul the whole train in a week.

The entire Pendolino fleet of 56 Class 390 ‘tilting’ trains, comprising 574 cars, 3,629 interior and exterior doors and 1,148 bogies, has now been overhauled.

Rob Whyte, intercity and regional managing director at Alstom UK and Ireland, said: “This project has been a real success story for Alstom and the team of highly-skilled engineers who have done a fantastic job in such a short space of time.

“The new facility was purpose-built for our work on the Class 390 trains, but with the flexibility to accommodate a much broader set of trains, allowing us to significantly increase our manufacturing capability in the UK. We have supported over 120 local jobs with this work and put millions of pounds into the local economy by working closely with local suppliers in the north west.”

The facility is also suitable for use by Class 334s, 175s and 180s, as well as other manufacturers’ trains.

The overhaul involved washing and stripping bogies, exchanging wheelsets, gearboxes, drop links, yaw dampers and other associated components, testing 4,100 modules and recycling 2.3 million consumables.

Peter Broadley, Virgin’s commercial operations director, said: “We’ve already seen a noticeable improvement in train performance for which the team at Alstom in Manchester deserve great credit in the timely way it was delivered!”

RTM recently went on a guided tour of the Longsight depot to view Alstom’s new TrainScanner, for automatically detecting maintenance faults. For a full report on the visit, check out our Apr/May edition, set to hit desks today.

(Image c. Alstom)


Andrew Gwilt   05/05/2016 at 01:28

The Class 390's are the best trains that Virgin Trains have ever had. I do like them plus they are very good whilst tilting on corners and bends at high speed despite the rail disaster at Grayrigg on 23 February 2007 that 115 people on board the train were killed and it was the worst rail accident on the WCML.

Neil Palmer   05/05/2016 at 07:58

Andrew, what on EARTH are you talking about? ONE person was killed in the Grayrigg incident.

Jude Robertson   24/02/2018 at 18:43

It's great to see the class 390s are being kept up to standards.

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