Germany-based Voith Engineering Services has completed the development of a low-floor tram for China.
The vehicle development is part of a contract the company secured in January 2014 from the Beijing Subway Rolling Stock Equipment Company (BSR) for a prototype low-floor tram.
Voith Engineering Services project manager Sven Hofmann said: "This makes it possible for us to demonstrate our complete vehicle expertise on an international level."
Under the 16-month project, the Voith team carried out the planning, concept development and detailed engineering of the vehicle at the sites in Chemnitz, Dessau and Dresden.
Voith engineers developed the vehicle’s body shell, bogie and the interior and exterior equipment in virtual 3D models.
In addition, they provided engineering estimates, electrical system design and wiring, as well as prepared concepts for factory and production planning, estimated material requirements and took into account profitability, safety and maintenance aspects.
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The project involved Chinese suppliers and the use of their components, as BSR wanted a modern and preferably, light vehicle weighing up to 50t when fully boarded.
For this project, BSR communicated with suppliers and procured the vehicle components on its own in China.
The prototype construction started in March and was completed in time for the Beijing ‘Urban Mass Transit’ fair in June.
A total of 12 Voith engineers supported BSR on-site in Beijing with services in the manufacturing fields of body shell, equipment, bogie, vehicle fit-out and cable routing.
The functional tests of the 34m-long, low-floor vehicle, which includes five parts, are expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Last March, Voith has invested around €25m in the construction of a new production plant for rail vehicle components in Shanghai, China.
The new production plant, spread over an area of around 10,000m², will become operational in 2016.
Image: New low-floor tram for Beijing developed by Voith Engineering Services. Photo: courtesy of Voith.