US-based Wabtec has received a contract worth around $38.3m (R$200m) from logistics solutions company VLI for the delivery of nine Evolution Series locomotives.

The ES43BBI model locomotives will be included in the firm’s premium fleet for the shipment of cargo on the Ferrovia Centro-Atlântica (FCA).

Designed for 1,000-mm gauge railways in Brazil, the ES43BBi is a heavy-haul locomotive that features a 12-cylinder, 4500HP Evolution Series engine, and eight powered axles that can run in Brazil’s severe environments.

The locomotive also features a redesigned air-to-air system and extra blowers directly integrated into the traction motors besides a modern AC-traction system with individual axle control and articulated trucks.

Its other features include RailConnect 360 software solutions, comprising Trip Optimiser, LOCOTROL Distributed Power System, PTC, and PTC 2.0.

The company plans to deliver the first locomotives in around 18 months.

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By GlobalData

VLI will deploy the new locomotives to meet the increased demand for cargo transport in its Central-East corridor.

This corridor is engaged in the shipment of freight from the steel industry, agribusiness, coal, fertilisers, fuel, and cellulose to Espírito Santo’s port system.

Furthermore, these shipments cover the company’s recently reached 30-year contract with LD Cellulose for the transportation of dissolving pulp.

Each year, VLI will ship 500,000 tonnes of material produced in the Triângulo Mineiro to Barra do Riacho (ES) port.

To support the LD Cellulose contract, the firm invested $76.6m (BRL400m) in wagons specifically designed to ship dissolving pulp.

VLI interim CEO Fábio Marchiori said: “The signing of this contract reinforces our commitment to customers who transport their cargo with VLI on the Ferrovia Centro-Atlântica and our team’s ability to co-create solutions to generate efficiency.

“It is also important to remember that the early renewal of the Ferrovia Centro-Atlântica concession contract will bring new increases in cargo volumes and, consequently, more incentives for national wagon and locomotive manufacturers.”