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FLIRTs For Maas-Wupper-Express


posted on 16th Feb 2022 07:49


Stadler and the Regionalverkehre Start Deutschland GmbH (start) signed a delivery contract for 20 FLIRT EMUs for the Maas-Wupper-Netz. This was based on a commission sent to „start“ by the Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Ruhr (VRR) and Zweckverband Nahverkehr Westfalen-Lippe (NWL). This operator, which was founded in 2016, ordered new vehicles for the first time, following an international public tender.

The new 160 km/h four-car FLIRTs for Maas-Wupper-Express will start regular service in 2026 on a direct route between Hamm and Eindhoven, making travelling from the Rhine-Ruhr region to The Netherlands faster and more convenient. They can be used without restriction in both countries because they are equipped for both the German and also the Dutch voltage systems, and are also fitted with on-board ETCS, the German PZB and the Dutch ATB system. 

The 86.9 m long trains (based on the FLIRT XL) for the Maas-Wupper-Express have seven entrance doors on each side to ensure easy and safe entry and exit, as well as fast passenger change times. There is space for 375 passengers, 235 of them seating. There are 34 first class seats and large multi-purpose areas that can accommodate up to 12 bicycles, wheelchairs or prams. The vehicles offer step-free access and also have a handicapped-accessible WC and another WC in the middle cars. 

The VRR financing model was applied for the procurement of the FLIRTs. With this, „start“ will purchase vehicles and will sell them to the VRR and NWL. The latter will become the owners of the trains, assume their financing and lease them to „start“ for the entire duration of the operation contract. 

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