German public transport network Rhein-Main-Verkehrsverbund (RMV) subsidiary fahma has placed a €500m order for 27 fuel cell trains from Alstom.

Alstom will deliver 27 units of Coradia iLint hydrogen model trains. The contract also includes the supply of hydrogen, maintenance and provision of reserve capacities for the next 25 years.

Alstom will supply the hydrogen fuel in partnership with Infraserv GmbH & Co Höchst KG. A refuelling station will be located at the Höchst industrial park.

The rolling stock manufacturer’s share in the contract amounts to €360m.

The Coradia iLint vehicles will operate on four regional train lines in the Taunus region from 2022, replacing the existing diesel-powered trains.

Alstom Germany and Austria managing director Dr Jörg Nikutta said: “We are very pleased that Alstom’s zero-emission Coradia iLint regional trains will be operated in Hesse in the near future, allowing climate-friendly transportation of passengers in the Taunus region.

“This new success, coupled with Coradia iLint’s previous success, demonstrates how trendsetting and sustainable transportation is already a reality.”

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Coradia iLint is said to be the first passenger train in the world to be powered by a hydrogen fuel cell. The trains are completely emission-free releasing only steam and liquid water in the environment.

Since September, two such vehicles have been operating in the Elbe-Weser network in Lower Saxony.

All 27 units to be delivered to RMV will be equipped with passenger information systems, Wi-Fi services and a separate area to store bicycles, wheelchairs and prams.

Each train will feature 160 seats, increasing the current capacity of the Taunus subnetwork by around 40%.