LEO Express and Stadler Rail Group have presented to the professional audience and the wider public for the first time the new intercity FLIRT train, which is expected to start commercial operation between Prague and Ostrava from the end of this year.
LEO Express, which has recently entered the Czech passenger transport railway market, ordered altogether 5 intercity trains from the Swiss rolling stock producer Stadler. The introduced vehicle is equipped with the most state-of-the-art technology available in the railway industry, which provides LEO Express all necessary means to reach an outstanding performance in the competition for passengers.
LEO Express has assigned Stadler with the production and delivery of 5 intercity trains back in 2010. Since then 2 trains have been already delivered to the Czech Republic for testing purposes, while the remaining 3 vehicles will be delivered by the Swiss company until the end of this year. LEO Express plans to set the trains into commercial operation in full range already from December 2012, with 16 connections per day on the line of Prague-Pardubice-Olomouc-Ostrava-Bohumin. Based on the model it launches on the Czech market, the private operator also has plans to extend its service to the neighbouring countries.
On the new train passengers will be able to choose among Premium, Business and Economy classes. The trains are equipped with 237 seating places, out of which 6 will belong to the Premium, 19 to the Business, and 212 to the Economy class. WIFI internet, advanced passenger information system, air-conditioning, as well as disabled accessible toilets and large luggage racks are also default features of the trains, which make travelling especially comfortable and convenient for passengers. The 90 meter long 5 part vehicles will have a maximum speed of 160 km/h, including an unrivalled speeding and braking ability within its category.
The trains have a modern, light and very durable construction, thus their weight is only the half of the conventional vehicles. This modern design and construction significantly decrease the power consumption and as a result, the overall operational costs. The maintenance friendly design of the train also lets the operators reach outstanding availability results in operation.
“In these weeks we are finishing the preparations for the start of our operation. InnoTrans is the very first opportunity for the general public to see closely the interior and exterior of this complete new train. Our train units belong to the most modern ones in Europe, the Swiss manufacturer Stadler has produced it exactly according to our requirements specifically for Czech customers. In many parameters these units represent the best that passengers could use in the Czech rail. They bring a unique combination of high speed, short travel time, comfortable interior, modern ICT technologies and providing high quality services, fully equivalent with the level of travelling in Western Europe. Our new trains will allow us to effectively fight our true competitors, namely road transport” said at the event Leos Novotny, the owner of LEO Express.
Peter Jenelten, Executive Vice President of Stadler Rail Group added: “On such presentations producers usually say how proud they are for their actual vehicle, which these days is more and more becoming a cliché. Of course we are proud. But at the same time we have to emphasize that this vehicle is not only an outstanding example of high-tech technology, but together with LEO Express it is also a trendsetter in the CEE region in terms of private operation of railways. We also believe that this model has a place in the market, as a large part of our customers are also from the private sector, and we wish good luck for LEO Express in the competition for passengers.