3120 – the last of the current order of Bombardier M5000s – is on its way to Manchester having left Vienna on Tuesday 27th September with its arrival at Queen’s Road Depot expected in the usual lunchtime slot on Saturday 1st October. The tram will be delivered over seven years since the first of the class arrived in July 2009, a seven years which has seen the major expansion of the Metrolink network and the eradication of the original T68 trams.
3120 has been built by Bombardier at their Vienna plant in Austria and brings a culmination to the major contract for the firm – for now at least. Christian Diewald, Chief Country Representative of Bombardier Transportation, Austria, said: “The on time delivery of the 120th tram truly proves the excellent and close cooperation between Bombardier and Transport for Greater Manchester since our successful partnership began. We are pleased that tram 120 will soon be available for the passengers of Greater Manchester. These trams feature a high degree of passenger comfort and score points with their strong performance in terms of energy efficiency and reliability.”
Upon arrival 3120 will undergo the usual commissioning and mileage accumulation before being passed for service.
As things stand at the moment this is the last M5000 due to be built for Metrolink. However there have been rumours for a while that some further examples may yet be ordered by Transport for Greater Manchester although this will be dependent on funding.