Launch of new GWR Intercity Express trains marred by major issues

Alicia Cross
October 17, 2017

The Department for Transport said: "The new trains are a renewal of the ageing Intercity 125 fleet, which was first introduced in 1976, and they will go on to replace fleets across the country".

"I'm excited, because people travelling between Swansea and London Paddington, from today, will be using the most modern trains on the network".

Managing director Karen Boswell was on board the Great Western Railway service out of Bristol Temple Meads, along with Transport Secretary Chris Grayling and other senior industry figures.

Trains in the £5.7 billion fleet will reach speeds of up to 125mph upon their initial rollout. Nine years of hard work has gone into the development of the new train, from creating a brand new factory and workforce.

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More than 70 percent of the parts sourced for building the trains at the facility come from British suppliers.

A Hitachi Rail Europe spokesman said: "There was a minor technical issue just before the train left the depot which engineers were able to fix, but meant the train was late leaving Bristol".

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"We've delivered pioneering 21st century trains for passengers to enjoy and sparked a manufacturing renaissance in the North East".

She said: "We can and will do better".

Many had to stand, despite claims that capacity was 20 per cent higher on the new trains.

It has spent £160m on two "state-of-the-art" depots in London and Bristol.

"Today, we at GWR are once again making history, as we launch the first new Intercity Express Train in nearly 40 years - and continue our journey to revalue rail in the hearts and minds of the travelling public", added GWR Managing Director Mark Hopwood.

This morning (Monday), commuters between Maidenhead and Paddington were supposed to be treated to the firm's latest addition - the Hitachi Class 800 Intercity Express. "I am delighted to have this first train in passenger service".

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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