New trains ordered for Paris at $4 billion pricetag

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ArtistsimpressionofthenewXtrapolisCityduplextrainsforParisCourtesyAlstom

Artist's impression of the new Xtrapolis Cityduplex trains for Paris.

Alstom

PARIS — The French Railway system has selected a Alstom-Bombardier consortium to supply 255 new high capacity commuter trains for lines D and E of the Paris cross city suburban or RER (Réseau Express Régional) network in a contract that could be worth around $4 billion assuming all 255 planned trains are purchased.

The first firm order, worth $1.2 billion entirely funded by Paris regional transport authority STIF is for 71 trains. In total 130 trains for the existing RER Line D and 125 for RER Line E services are planned replacing older trains on line D and enabling expansion of Line E service.

Alstom and Bombardier will build the trains at their French factories and the order is shared between them on a 70:30 basis with Alstom having the biggest share. The new trains will be delivered starting in 2021 in time for a $4 billion extension of the E line west from Paris St Lazare station to Nanterre via the La Défense business district.

The new trains are designed to have no significant slack between cars and feature extra-wide sliding doors for crowded trains. About 70 percent of all French rail passengers travel on commuter trains in Paris and its surrounding region.

Alstom calls the new train design its Xtrapolis Cityduplex; the company has sold its Xtrapolis range around the world but until now never as a double deck train. Each of the new trains has single deck driving vehicles at each end with bi-level intermediate cars designed to 1,861 people.

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