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The first of 19 Nova 1 Hitachi Rail bi-modes destined for TransPennine Express was unloaded at Southampton Docks on June 11
Five-car 802201 will begin testing across the North this summer, ahead of entering passenger service in summer 2019.
The modern Japanese bullet train inspired fleet is being built by Hitachi and financed by Angel Trains.
From 2019 this fleet will support the Great North Rail Project by connecting major cities in the North of England and Scotland and will run from Manchester and Liverpool, across the Pennines to cities such as Leeds, York, Newcastle and Edinburgh.
The trains will provide 161 additional seats per train compared to the existing trains on the popular intercity route. Customers will benefit from spacious carriages, providing extra legroom and additional luggage space and the experience on-board will be completely transformed.
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.
Passengers will see further improvements following the upgrade of the Transpennine route between Manchester, Leeds and York.
The investment in these new trains is supporting thousands 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 £80million depot in Doncaster.
Hitachi is using its famous Japanese-bullet train technology to make the new Nova 1 fleet light and aerodynamic. The 19 trains will all be hybrid, meaning they can switch seamlessly mid-journey between electric and diesel power. The trains, will be able to run in either five or ten carriage formation, capable of speeds of up to 140mph in electric mode and 125 mph using diesel engines.
By using modern MTU engines from Rolls-Royce, the trains will cut harmful emissions under diesel power by up to 90%.
Berry Sas, Projects Director for Hitachi Rail Europe said:
“We are excited to bring Japanese bullet train technology to the North and look forward to our fleet transforming journeys on this busy route. Our decision to use British businesses to supply parts for the new trains is a multi-million pound boost to the economy, supporting jobs at production sites around the country”
TransPennine Express Managing Director Leo Goodwin said:
“We are very excited that the first test train of our Nova 1 fleet has now arrived in the UK.
“TransPennine Express is delivering an investment of £500million in the next two years in additional services, more seats and not one but three brand new train fleets.”
This article first appeared on www.focustransport.org
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