French national railway company SNCF has chosen Bombardier as the preferred bidder for a $1.4bn contract to supply between 80 and 135 suburban and regional trains.

The contract is expected to be signed in February 2010, with the first trains due to enter service in mid-2013.

The deal could have an option of up to 860 trains, which would take the contract value to $12.6bn, if options are exercised.

Bombardier beat Alstom to secure the deal.