Renfe Operadora received a EUR 100 million loan from the European Investment Bank for the procurement of 31 trainsets totaling EUR 201 million.
The project consists of the acquisition of 26 electric and 5 hybrid trains which will replace the ageing rolling stock in metric gauge rail network of Asturias, Cantabria and Vizcaya.
The new rolling stock will be equipped with state-of-the-art technology in terms of energy efficiency. In addition, the hybrid units will only use diesel traction on the non-electrified sections of the lines, while the existing old rolling stock to be replaced by these units uses diesel traction along the entire route, be it electrified or not.
The maintenance of the new trains will be performed the existing depots. Two of them, namely the depots of El Berrón (Oviedo) and Santander, will be extended and modernised. The extension is expected to be carried out within the area currently occupied by the railway, and there will be no additional land take.
The trains will be operated under Public Service contract signed between the Ministry of Transport and Renfe Operadora for the period of 2018-2027.
In July, Renfe’s Board approved the tender for the procurement of 38 trains valuated at EUR 365.6 million. The contract would see the supply of 29 multiple units with 9 additional trains.
According to the tender, the trains will be designed for speeds of 160 km/h on electrified lines and 140 km/h on non-electrified lines.
They will be equipped with Wi-Fi, passenger information system and air conditioning system. The new trains will be adapted for passengers with reduced mobility and will have dedicated spaces for bicycles.
The project is expected to increase the attractiveness of rail services compared to the current situation.