The Anonymous Widower

CAF Selected For Major Battery Train Order

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Railway Gazette International.

This is the first paragraph.

CAF has been named as preferred bidder for what it says is the largest order to date for battery trains. This covers the supply and maintenance of more than 60 electric multiple-units which will be able to operate on non-electrified sections of the Niederrhein-Münsterland network.

On reading the rest of the article, it sounds like the trains are to a high standard, with all the features one could expect.

As in Bolton-Wigan £78m Rail Electrification Project Announced, I predicted that CAF could sell a number of battery-electric trains to Northern in the UK, it looks like CAF could be building a substantial number of battery-electric trains.

There could even be the possibility of some of the German trains being assembled in the CAF factory in Newport, as the logistics might be easier.


September 2, 2021 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , ,


  1. In addition to Spain, CAF also has factories in France, UK, Brazil, Mexico and USA.
    Somehow I think they’re more likely to build any trains for Nordrhein-Westfalen in France as they avoid all the Customs issues associated with goods leaving and re-entering the EU The Bagnères-de-Bigorre factory is in the Occitanie region of southwestern France.

    Comment by fammorris | September 2, 2021 | Reply

    • Just looked it up. It’s just over the border from the Basque country. It looks like it was a factory CAF took over or a joint venture.

      Certainly though, CAF seem to be positioning themselves at the forefront of battery trains and trams. Bombardier threw away the lead they had!

      Comment by AnonW | September 2, 2021 | Reply

  2. But the existing CAF UK rolling stock is not step free level access which the Stadler UK rolling stock is

    Comment by chilterntrev | September 3, 2021 | Reply

    • Agreed!

      I had a chat with a Greater Anglia driver a couple of months ago and he said, it had really improved dwell times and they should be able to add more stops, if they wanted. He also said that on the old trains, someone dropped something important in the gap fairly regularly.

      Interesting to note, tat HS2 has specified gap fillers to reduce dwell times.

      Comment by AnonW | September 3, 2021 | Reply

    • I’d love to see how a step free mechanism really works. Network-wide standards allow for a tolerance of 50 millimetres, there’s a further 15 mm to allow for wheel wear and then there’s the question of track superelevation (cant). I read a blog recently of Penrith station where one rail is 4.5 inches higher than the other – that adds a few more millimetres and widens or closes the gap between platform edge and car body.
      At least platform gap fillers are cheap, don’t require platform civils work and probably improve passenger boarding/detraining confidence.

      Comment by fammorris | September 4, 2021 | Reply

  3. I picture here –

    Agree it won’t work very well at Penrith but most of the big step up will be eliminated.

    Note that on Merseyrail, all the platforms have been checked and nearly all were reworked/refurbished/etc.

    In Denmark Greater Copenhagen area, all the Lokaltag platforms were rebuilt as were the Oresundtag platforms (Copenhagen Airport – Copenhagen – Helsingor) when step free level accey trains were introduced.

    Denmark, Lokaltag, low floor roll-on-roll-off wheelchair/buggy/pushchair/bicycle friendly Alstom Coradia LINT 41 units operated by Lokaltog on the Hornbaekbanen (Hornbaek line).

    In this picture, nite the pop-out horizontal step. On arrival, when the door open button is pressed, this step slides out until the ‘feelers’ (which are black) at each side of the step hit the platform edge, the step then retracts 1-2cm and then the doors open. So the gap is minimal and suits each individual door and platform interface.

    Note the level boarding – no need to book ahead for assistance – just turn up and roll-on-roll-off. Plenty of space for wheelchairs, buggies, prams, bicycles, etc. These trains date from about 2006-2007. The platforms are in good condition and look very much like the platform edges and surfacing was reconstructed when the LINT units were introduced.

    Comment by chilterntrev | September 4, 2021 | Reply

  4. Renfe has just ordered 28 BEMUs from CAF for use on ‘short’ unelectrified sections of Media Distancia services. These will presumably replace 599 series diesel trains, but I’m not sure exactly which routes are meant here, as the unelectrified MD ones are generally not ‘short’.

    Comment by Peter Robins | October 12, 2022 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: