The new trains will be able to run under the different voltages of the rail networks of France’s neighboring countries.
The SNCF has placed an order with Alstom for 15 additional new-generation TGVs, in addition to the 100 units already acquired four years ago, to cope with traffic growth and launch trains abroad. The contract worth almost 590 million euros, announced by the rail manufacturer on Thursday, concerns four-stream TGV which, Alstom notes, “corresponds to European traffic needs“.
In fact, these new trains will be able to circulate under the different tensions of the rail networks in France and in neighboring countries, which will allow, for example, linking Paris to Berlin or venturing into Italy. As long as their engines can read the different signals. “We have planned that this TGV can go anywhere in Europe“, Christophe Fanichet, executive director of SNCF Voyageurs, had indicated last year. The company confirmed the request to AFP, taken accordingly”in anticipation of customer demand exceeding initial forecasts“.
“It is a decision that accompanies the desire of Jean-Pierre Farandou (executive director of SNCF) to double the share of rail in passenger transport by the 2030s, in order to achieve the necessary climate transition.“said a spokesman. The contract completes an initial order for 100 trains for the French market, placed in 2018 for 2.7 billion euros, within the framework of a “innovation associationconcluded in 2016 between SNCF and Alstom to design the “TGV of the future“. This has since been called “TGV-Mby the railway company and “Avelia Horizon” by the manufacturer. It costs 20% less than the previous generation, indicate the two parties. the deployment ofTGV-Mit will be distributed over ten years, starting in 2024, according to SNCF Voyageurs. The delivery date for the 15 additional trains has not been specified.
Rebound in attendance
“This solution responds to SNCF’s technological, economic and competitive challenges, in an environment of strong passenger demand for low-carbon mobility solutions“, commented Jean-Baptiste Eyméoud, president of Alstom France, quoted in the press release. “More capacity, more ecological and more comfortable, the TGV M meets the expectations of customers who increasingly choose the train as their means of transport.added SNCF Voyageurs.
In fact, the 360 TGVs currently in service are struggling to keep up with demand this summer, the dramatic spike in attendance making people quickly forget about empty trains during the pandemic. SNCF has even been accused of overhauling its old trains too quickly or sending too many to Spain, where it launched its low-cost Ouigo service last year. Fourth generation of French-style high-speed trains in 40 years – the first entered service in 1981 – the “TGV-M» It should allow the transport of 20% more passengers than the current equipment. It will have capacity for 740 people per train in maximum configuration.
Great novelty, modularity: cars can be added or removed to have more or less long trains, according to needs. SNCF Voyageurs will also be able to change the configuration of the seats to transform a car from first to second, and vice versa. This new train will have to consume 20% less energy than its predecessors thanks to more efficient aerodynamics and motorization. Its designers show 37% less CO2 emissions and 97% recyclable materials.
Alstom also promises a 30% saving on maintenance thanks, in particular, to sensors that will allow parts to be changed at the right time. Its train is assembled in La Rochelle, with ten of the manufacturer’s plants being associated with the project, including Belfort for the manufacture of the motor cars, Ornans (Doubs) for the engines, Tarbes for the traction chain, Le Creusot (Saône- et-Loire) for bogies and Villeurbanne (Lyon metropolis) for on-board computer systems.
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