New M5000 order increased to 16 from 12

Transport for Greater Manchester have now confirmed that the recently announced deal for extra LRVs on the Metrolink network will be for 16 vehicles rather than the expected 12, bringing the eventual size of the M5000 fleet to 120.

The larger order is said to have been made possible through a combination of favourable exchange rates and buying in bulk with the cash still coming through the government’s Local Growth Fund. It is anticipated that the 16 new LRVs will cost £34 million.

Cllr Andrew Fender, Chair of the TfGM Metrolink Committee, said: “This latest tram order is great news for Metrolink passengers and means there will be 26 new trams set to start running on the network in coming years. As Metrolink expands and grows in popularity we know that our customers want extra services and extra room on trams, and that’s why we are looking to the future and making sure we can meet that demand. This order will bring the tram fleet to 120 vehicles – a symbol of just how far our network has come since it opened in 1992 with just 26 trams. Our major expansion programme has been a giant leap for Metrolink, and that leap has been matched by the far greater performance and quality of the new M5000 trams compared to the original, now-retired T68 vehicles.”

The FLEXITY Swift vehicles will continue to be built by Bombardier at Bautzen in Germany and Vienna in Austria and it is expected all 120 will be in Manchester by 2017 to aid an increase in capacity.

This order is for the future but in the past few days the M5000s which are already in Manchester have also been making the news with 3087 entering service (at the time of this LRV entering service it meant that all LRVs in Manchester had carried passengers) and then 3088 being delivered to Queens Road. 3087 was first in use on Thursday 11th September and like the other recent LRVs to enter service is restricted to TMS enabled routes whilst 3088 arrived on Saturday 13th September and is now undergoing commissioning. There are now 86 M5000s available for service with just 3013 (still undergoing accident repairs) and 3088 not operational.

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2 Responses to New M5000 order increased to 16 from 12

  1. Ralph Oakes-Garnett says:

    The total now surpasses some notable systems in size ie Rotterdam at 116.

  2. freel07 says:

    In fact the Metrolink Service Improvement Package within the GMCA Growth and Development Plan describes the contractual process for the procurement options negotiated with Bombardier and states that the placing of this order for 16 more trams now extends the option timescales by another 6 months. The final total which the contract allows TfGM to purchase is 141 when all options have been exercised. TfGM are actively trying to build a business case for the procurement of additional trams within this timescale. However it states that the present maximum stabling capacity within the 2 depots is 135 so any further additions would not take the fleet above 135 as the investment required beyond that would be significant according to the GMCA papers. It seems to be a cse of watch this space.