The President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, unveiled, at Cape Town station, the X’Trapolis Mega trains manufactured by Alstom-led Gibela joint-venture. “This is indeed a great milestone in our effort to improve the safety, reliability and comfort of commuter rail transport,” president Ramaphosa said.
These trains are part of the contract on the 600 X’Trapolis mega commuter trains built for Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA). The first 18 trains, currently operating in Pretoria, north of Johannesburg, were manufactured at Alstom’s Lapa factory in Brazil. Gibela’s new, modern train manufacturing facility located in Dunnottar (Gauteng Province) has started the production of the first trains made in South Africa by South African people – the first three such trains having been delivered to PRASA between December 2018 and March 2019.
The 53,000-square-metre Gibela plant, inaugurated in October 2018, is located in Dunnottar, east of Johannesburg (Ekurhuleni). It has been built with the capacity to produce 62 trains a year at peak production (each trainset comprises six cars). Local suppliers are involved in the supply chain in line with local content contractual commitments.
In 2013, Gibela secured the PRASA contract to build 600, state-of-the-art, X’Trapolis mega commuter trains as well as the 19-year contract for maintenance, technical support and spare parts. The first 20 trains were manufactured in Alstom’s facility in Brazil.