Final train in new fleet delivered to First TransPennine Express
The 10th and final new Siemens-built Class 350/4 train has been handed over to First TransPennine Express (FTPE), Siemens confirmed on 28 March.
In May, FTPE will launch a new timetable incorporating the full fleet of 10 new electric trains, which will bring a 30% capacity increase across the whole of FTPE’s north of England network.
The new timetable will include:
- 15 services a day in each direction between Glasgow and Edinburgh and Manchester Airport providing 50,000 seats a week,
- Five trains an hour across the Pennines,
- A new express service between Liverpool and Newcastle,
- An additional 90,000 seats per week across the FTPE network.
The fleet has been delivered in a partnership between manufacturer Siemens Rail Systems, train operator FTPE, leasing company Angel Trains Ltd, and authority Network Rail.
Siemens Rail Systems will provide engineering and maintenance support for the new trains alongside its existing diesel Class 185 fleet at its newly electrified Ardwick depot in Manchester. Significant changes to the depot infrastructure, made within the last year, have seen it extended to accommodate both electric and diesel trains, with multi-skilled teams working on both technologies.
The partners say that investment in rolling stock has already led to the creation of 200 new jobs.
Steve Scrimshaw, Managing Director of Siemens Rail Systems in the UK, said: ‘It is fantastic to be able to celebrate another on-time fleet delivery. Just over two years from initial contract signature to full fleet acceptance is a great achievement and is indicative of Siemens commitment to meeting customer needs in tight timescales. The new trains, which take the number of Siemens vehicles in the UK to 1,558 carriages, will bring significant benefits to the northwest in the form of increased capacity, energy efficiency and economic benefits.
‘We are delighted to have been involved in this collaborative partnership, building, testing and delivering new trains that will transform the travel experience for FTPE passengers. It is projects like this that highlight what can be achieved in a short timescale when our industry pulls together.’