A consortium of Siemens and Škoda Transportation won the tender to deliver České dráhy (CD) 20 Viaggio Comfort nine-car non-traction units including control cars. EUR 500 million is the value of the contract under which the new cars will be delivered from 2024 to 2026.
The super-modern comfort cars are to be operated in the upcoming years on routes from Prague via Ústí nad Labem to Hamburg or via Brno to Budapest and Vienna. They will have a capacity of 555 seats and a maximum operating speed of up to 230 km/h.
“These new cars will bear the mark of our Czech engineering department. They, for example, score points with barrier-free access for all passengers and quiet travel conditions at high speeds for comfortable journeys. Our state-of-the-art cars will help make sustainable rail transportation in Czech Republic even more attractive,” Gerhard Greiter, CEO of Region North-East Europe at Siemens Mobility said.
The concluded framework contract provides for a total of 182 wagons be purchased, 180 of which are intended for ČD passenger transport, whereas two wagons shall be purchased by the Czech Railway Administration Authority for track testing purposes.
“The units will be equipped with the most advanced features available on the current European market and will offer passengers the highest level of comfort,” Ivan Bednárik, Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO of ČD, said.
The new train cars have a number of innovative features. Passengers will appreciate adjustable seats in first and second class, charging sockets for e-bikes, and a state-of-the-art bistro area. The trains will have WiFi connections, frequency-transparent windows for improved mobile phone reception, and an on-board information and electronic reservation system will be standard. The nine-car trains will also be equipped with wireless mobile phone chargers in first class, a children’s cinema, and storage space for 12 bicycles.
The control cars will be equipped with an on-board unit of the European train protection system ETCS as well as national train protection systems.
The Viaggio Comfort cars will be approved for operation in the Czech Republic and neighboring European countries such as Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland. The interoperability of the vehicles will be ensured by meeting the respective regional specifications.
Czech Railways previously ordered 50 Viaggio Comfort passenger cars from Siemens Mobility and Škoda Transportation in 2018.
The Czech Republic intends to increase the speed limit on the conventional lines to 200 km/h and to build a high-speed rail network. Prague – Dresden high-speed rail project is progressing as the Ministry of Transport approved the feasibility study and currently there are preparations for the geological survey.