UK-based train operating company West Midlands Trains (WMT) has announced the completion of first Class 730 electric multiple-unit (EMU) for Birmingham’s Cross-City Line.
The train was unveiled at Bombardier’s facility in Derby where the Class 730 EMUs are currently under production.
WMT is set to introduce 36 such trains for the Cross-City Line service that runs between Lichfield, Bromsgrove and Redditch, through Sutton Coldfield and Longbridge.
The new trains will feature dedicated spaces for wheelchairs and bicycles, as well as intelligent air conditioning systems, free Wi-Fi, and at-seat power and USB sockets.
The first unit is currently undergoing testing ahead of its expected introduction into passenger service next year.
In addition, sister company London Northwestern Railway will also acquire 225 carriages for its West Coast Main Line services between the West Midlands, Liverpool and London.
West Midlands Railway managing director Julian Edwards said: “These superb new electric trains will enhance the travelling experience for our customers and I am delighted to see for myself that progress has been continuing apace despite the challenge of coronavirus.
“This is one of two new fleets we are introducing as we increase our capacity by 25% as we continue to welcome passengers back to the railway.
“Now more than ever, our £700m investment into our new train projects will play a vital role in the future of train travel in the West Midlands and beyond.”
WMT operates West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway services. The franchise commenced on 10 December 2017 and is slated to run until 2025-2026.
During the period, WMT will invest £1bn to introduce new trains, improve routes and upgrade stations.