Abellio Greater Anglia and Angel Trains unveil trial upgrades
Abellio Greater Anglia and Angel Trains unveiled on 28 November a pilot refurbished Class 317 train, which they say will be used to gain customer feedback and help prioritise improvements to trains on the West Anglia routes.
The project illustrates upgrades that could be made to the trains, which currently operate many services between Ely, Cambridge, Hertford East, Enfield, Chingford and London. Passenger feedback will be sought once the train enters service in the first quarter of 2014.
New features include:
- Refurbished interior with new seating and additional grab poles;
- More space on-board with larger vestibule areas;
- CCTV cameras throughout the train to ensure a safe environment;
- Climate controlled environment;
- Plug sockets and Wi-Fi throughout the train;
- Passenger information systems to provide journey details.
The train unveiled at Ilford has received a number of technical upgrades (including new AC traction motors and regenerative braking), which are intended to deliver better performance at a lower cost, compared to the existing fleet. Key benefits should include:
- Better performance – improved acceleration which should help improve punctuality and offer potential for quicker journeys;
- Reduced maintenance – the new traction motors should be more reliable and the time between maintenance overhauls can be significantly increased;
- Greater reliability – the replacement traction system will provide performance more akin to a new train;
- Reduced environmental impact – under optimal conditions Class 317 should use up to 40% less power;
- Lower cost – significant reductions in maintenance and operating costs.
The overhaul was carried out by Bombardier Transportation with a large proportion of the work undertaken at the company’s Ilford depot.