The sustainable and hybrid Blues train, constructed by Hitachi Rail for Trenitalia, has entered its passenger service in Sicily, Italy.

Under the framework agreement, Hitachi Rail will supply up to 135 Blues trains to Trenitalia that are valued at €1.2bn. Around 22 Blues trains will operate in the Sicily region.

Claimed to be Europe’s first tri-modal train, the Blues train features a next-generation hybrid technology, which enables it to operate with diesel engines on non-electrified lines.

The technology also allows to operate these trains with pantographs on the electrified line, as well as with batteries on non-electrified lines.

Switching off the engines during the arrival, parking and departure from the stations enable to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 50% compared to current diesel trains.

Blues train is installed with an advanced air conditioning system that helps to optimise consumption based on the actual number of passengers on board, USB and 220v power sockets.

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By GlobalData

Its other features include large windows, bike areas and high luggage transport capacity.

With an acceleration of 1.10 m/sec2, the trains can attain a maximum speed of 160 km/h. The train can accommodate up to 300 people seated in the four-cars composition.

Hitachi Rail Italy vehicles business line executive director Andrea Pepi said: “The Blues train is a great technological challenge that we are proud to have undertaken.

“Our goal is to deliver innovations that translate both into higher quality travel for passengers and benefits for the environment, and ultimately delivering value to our customers.”

Last month, Hitachi Rail secured a €368m order for the delivery of 46 new metro trains for the Milan metro in Italy.