SNCF, the French railway operator, recently awarded Alstom a contract worth €37 million for the upgrade of 48 existing Corail regional cars. In addition, there are options worth about €18 million for the transformation of up to 30 further regional cars.
The existing trains are composed of an electric locomotive and between four and eight passenger cars. The upgrade will consist in installing a driver cab at the end of a tale car, so that it can operate in “push” as well as in “pull” mode. It will then no longer be necessary to move the locomotive to the other end of the train for a return trip.
Three Alstom sites in France will be involved in this contract. Reichshoffen will be in charge of design and production, Tarbes will provide some cab equipment and Saint Ouen will be responsible for speed control.
Delivery will start in 2006 and finish in 2008. Once Alstom has finished this work, the cars will return to SNCF’s maintenance centre in Romilly where the passenger area will be completely refurbished.