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Deutsche Bahn chooses Talgo to design the German train of the future
The German operator will use the train designed and manufactured by Talgo, ICE L, to foster the decarbonization of mobility in central Europe with long-distance services, thanks to the vehicle’s lighter weight and lower energy consumption.
Gonzalo Urquijo Fernández de Araoz, CEO of Talgo, and Dr. Micheal Peterson, CEO of Deutsche Bahn’s for long-distance passenger transport and member of the board of directors, presented today the first passenger car of the intercity train that, in its category, will become the European reference. The ICE L is a long-distance train, which is being designed and manufactured by Talgo and which has been chosen by the German operator to become the new design reference for the trains of the future.
The new Talgo trains will circulate at a maximum commercial speed of 230km/h and will reinforce Deutsche Bahn's fleet in the second half of 2024. The ICE L trains will allow the German operator to continue expanding its long-distance fleet in order to increase train capacity and offer greater comfort and improved service to more passengers, in addition to the highest performance.
The ICE L will be international and interoperable trains. They are planned to operate domestic routes in Germany, as well as connect Germany with the Netherlands, Austria and the Swiss border. Among others, they will run on the international route between Berlin and Amsterdam, substantially reducing the current travel time between the two cities. They will be equipped with highly versatile locomotive-hauled coaches, which will be the perfect complement to DB's fleet.
Dr. Micheal Peterson, CEO of Deutsche Bahn’s for long-distance passenger transport and member of the board of directors, said: “Level access on the ICE L sets standards that we from now on want to pursue in vehicle concepts of the future in long-distance transportation. We are making rail travels even more inclusive and comfortable. In addition to level access, our customers will also experience the new ICE interior design on the ICE L. A living room atmosphere on rails is only possible when traveling with Deutsche Bahn.”
Gonzalo Urquijo Fernández de Araoz, CEO of Talgo, said: “We stand before newgeneration trains that will strengthen Deutsche Bahn's offering and that are part of a completely new standard set by the most challenging customer in the global rail market. A new model of passenger service will be inaugurated with the new ICE L and is set to become a benchmark in the dynamic European market.”.
Deutsche Bahn formalized a first order for 23 composition trains (1 locomotive + 17 passenger cars) worth €550 million in 2019. This order is part of a framework agreement for up to 100 units. Talgo was awarded the contract after submitting the most attractive bid in a Europe-wide tender, prevailing, among others, against the national manufacturer Siemens.
Setting a new reference in accessibility
The new train will offer the highest standards of accessibility, as it will be the first longdistance train in Germany to allow access at platform level. Its step-free access, and at the platform level, is a feature of the trains manufactured by Talgo, which will facilitate the journey for all passengers and will allow users in wheelchairs or with reduced mobility to board and disembark without the need for external assistance. This will also help to reduce the boarding and disembarking time at stations, shortening travel times.
In addition, the ICE L train will facilitate mobility within the vehicle for all passengers, especially for people with reduced mobility, passengers with bulky and heavy luggage, or families with children and strollers. A passenger car will have three wheelchair spaces with height-adjustable tables. In addition, the train will have a tactile guidance system that will provide all the information in Braille.
More space, greater versatility and state-of-the-art features
Deutsche Bahn has chosen Talgo to design the new German trains of the future. The new ICE L trains will be equipped with feature the highest standards, such as highpowered wireless internet, more luggage space, functional windows for improved mobile reception and intelligent lighting, new and completely new comfortable seats, passenger cars specially designed for families with children, as well as a passenger car for people with reduced mobility, an on-board restaurant, eight bicycle seats and information screens with real-time data.
With regard to the technical characteristics, the ICE L trains will consist of a multi-system locomotive (compatible with different power supply voltages and different signalling systems) and 17 passenger cars, a number that can subsequently be adapted to demand, thanks to the versatility of the train. In addition to being used with the Talgo locomotive, these trains will be compatible with other locomotives, both electric and diesel, guaranteeing the train's interoperability on the stipulated routes.
They will have a larger capacity than the competition: a total of 562 seats, of which 85 seats are first class, and 477 seats are second class.
Environmentally friendly travel
The new ICE L trains will enable Deutsche Bahn to promote the decarbonisation of mobility in Central Europe on its long-distance services. This is thanks to the light weight of the Talgo trains, which are characterised by independent wheels and guided axles that are much lighter than conventional axles. In total, ICE L trains will weigh aproximately 20% less on a per passenger basis than equivalent competitor trains.
This, together with the aerodynamically optimized exterior design of the vehicle, results in excellent energy efficiency, which will enable the German operator to reduce energy consumption and save costs. This low weight also promotes a much less aggressive ride on the infrastructure, which in turn reduces maintenance costs for both the track and the train.
In addition, the air conditioning equipment is designed and prepared so that in the future the refrigerant can be changed to a more ecological one. In this way, Talgo has designed a train capable of adapting to the technological and energy changes that are to come, while maintaining its ecological profile.
Technical Features of ICE L passenger cars
◼ Step-free access to all doors from standard platforms with a height of 760 mm
◼ Various lighting modes throughout the day
◼ Eight bicycle spaces on each train and a storage room for sports equipment (e.g. ski and snowboard racks)
◼ Information monitors in entryways and seating areas displaying real-time data
◼ Wi-Fi and onboard entertainment
◼ Onboard restaurant passenger car with bar and grouped seats
◼ Separate area for small children and families with a play area for children and storage spaces for strollers
◼ Spaces for three passengers in wheelchairs with height adjustable tables
◼ Storage for oversize luggage in every passenger car
◼ Selection of newly designed seats that have been tested in advance with passengers before being installed in all vehicles