The first of seven Tram-Trains for use on Stagecoach Supertram is nearing completion in Spain with the first pictures of the vehicle under construction having recently been released on social media by Supertram. The seven vehicles are being built by Vossloh at their factor near Valencia and the first is due to be delivered to Sheffield in November once initial testing has taken place.
The seven vehicles have been ordered to both form the service on the UK’s trial operation of tram-trains between Sheffield and Rotherham and also to increase capacity on the current Supertram network. It is currently anticipated that the delayed project will see the first services run to Rotherham Parkgate along Network Rail metals in early 2017 once all infrastructure works have been completed. This will include the construction of a 400m connection at Meadowhall South between the Supertram network and the freight line.
The vehicles will be numbered in the national rail TOPS numbering systems and will be known as class 399s. This will be the first time that any trams will have been numbered in this series.
The first Tram-Train – which is being completed in the standard Stagecoach Supertram livery – is now rapidly approaching completion and once this is done extensive testing will take place in Spain before it is transported to Sheffield. It is expected that it will be at its new home in November of this year before further testing, commissioning and driver familiarisation takes place. At least some of the vehicles are likely to enter service on the current Supertram network ahead of the opening of the line to Rotherham.