LE TRAIN Orders Avrils

posted on 24th Jan 2023 08:10

On 23 January 2023 in Bordeaux the new French open access operator LE TRAIN signed an agreement with Talgo for a batch of high speed trains, based on the Avril design, for use in France.

LE TRAIN, founded in 2020, is France's first domestic train operator which focuses on providing high speed services. It was granted its operating licence recently, on 24 December 2022. Earlier in the year it had announced its rolling stock requirements to the main European high speed train manufacturers, and following negotiations, selected Talgo as a supplier.

It is envisaged to acquire a fleet of ten trains, whose maintenance will probably be undertaken by Talgo in France. It is also envisaged that an R&D centre be established somewhere in Nouvelle Aquitaine. At this centre the focus would be on developing rail-based transport as the most environmentally sustainable form of land-based mobility.

Construction of the new trains is now scheduled to start at Talgo's Rivabellosa factory, near Miranda de Ebro, during the first quarter of 2023. The first are expected to be completed and ready for delivery in 2025. They are to be used on a network connecting Bordeaux, Rennes, Tours, Nantes, Poitiers, Angoulême, Angers, La Rochelle and Arcachon. Service level will amount to 50 trains per day, carrying an anticipated three million-plus passengers annually. LE TRAIN plans to have a workforce of 150.

Alain Getraud, LE TRAIN's Director-General, observed: 'Today is a milestone in the history of our company and for rail transport in France. Thanks to this agreement we will be able to offer daily high speed rail services for the millions of residents in Nouvelle Aquitaine, Bretagne, Pais de Loire and Centre Val de Loire. We have chosen Talgo, one of the main train manufacturers in Europe, with state-of-the-art technology, and a solid industrial background, to ensure that the trains built are first-rate.

The design proposed by Talgo will enable us to offer a unique travelling experience to our passengers, enabling them to take with them things they need for leisure and sport purposes, such as bikes and surfboards. Moreover, we and Talgo share a common ambition - to work together to further the cause of sustainable, low carbon-emission mobility.'

Carlos Palacio Oriol, the President of Patentes Talgo, replied: 'With LE TRAIN, Talgo has entered a large scale, long term association. This is a great opportunity for our company to expand its knowledge and innovations beyond the Pyrenees. It is an honour that LE TRAIN has chosen us to develop its first fleet of new high speed trains. We are convinced that the trains selected by LE TRAIN will serve to drive the ecological transition.'

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