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November 2, 2016

Hitachi Rail Europe and UK’s First Group enter deal for five bi-mode trains

Hitachi Rail Europe has entered a £60m deal with UK-based First Group for five bi-mode AT300 trains, which will be financed by rolling stock leasing company Angel Trains.

By Srivani Venna

Hitachi Rail Europe has entered a £60m deal with UK-based First Group for five bi-mode AT300 trains, which will be financed by rolling stock leasing company Angel Trains.

Each vehicle will be used by Hull Trains on services from London Kings Cross to Hull and Beverley, offering 61 extra passengers seats. 

Hitachi said it will build five AT300 trains of five carriages each, operating as bi-modes.

Expected to enter service in 2019, the new vehicles will be able to travel on the electrified East Coast Main Line from London King’s Cross and on diesel power on the un-electrified line to Hull and Beverley.

FirstGroup Rail Division managing director Steve Montgomery said: “The new trains we are introducing will provide 20% more seats for our customers and also offer the potential for faster journeys.

“We also intend to invest in the current Hull Trains fleet to ensure they are fit for the next three years.”

Under the agreement, Hitachi will completely maintain the trains at its new facility located at Bounds Green in north London. 

"The new trains we are introducing will provide 20% more seats for our customers and also offer the potential for faster journeys."

The trains will be built at the company’s manufacturing facility in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham. 

Designed to operate at a top speed of 140mph, the trains will feature new interiors, air-conditioning, Wi-Fi, power sockets and are environmentally friendly. 

Hitachi Rail Europe managing director Karen Boswell said: "Using our innovative bi-mode power model, these trains can begin operation immediately on the UK rail network, which means passengers won’t have to wait to enjoy the new benefits.

“This is the start of a long-term relationship between Hitachi and Hull Trains and, following our recent train and maintenance order from FirstGroup’s TransPennine Express franchise, another sign of our strong commitment to the Northern Powerhouse.”


Image: Hull Trains branded Hitachi Inter City train. Photo: courtesy of Hitachi Rail Europe.

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