Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram has announced that the first of the region’s new, publicly owned, battery powered trains will begin final testing on the network this week.
The fleet is now ready to enter final tests and driver training between Kirkby and the town’s new £80 million station at Headbolt Lane, due to open later this year.
Once testing is complete, the trains, which deliver an 80% reduction in energy consumption, will be the first battery powered trains of their type in the country to operate in passenger service, cementing the city region’s place at the forefront of pioneering rail technology and innovation.
Steve said: “This is not only a massive milestone for our area, but for the entire country, as our new publicly owned, battery powered trains enter final testing.
“Our trains will be the first of their kind in the country, fitted with pioneering battery technology that will help us to significantly reduce our carbon footprint and pave the way for a cleaner, greener, and better-connected London-style transport network. This is the gold standard of public transport – and it’s the very least that our residents deserve.
“We are enormously grateful to passengers for their patience during this final testing stage but I can guarantee them that their new battery powered trains – and their brand new station – will be worth the wait!”
It follows the launch of the region’s new £500 million fleet earlier this year. Designed in consultation with the public, the new fleet is among the most sophisticated and accessible in the country featuring slide step technology and other smart features, as well as additional space for wheelchair users and prams.
The battery technology, which enables the trains to run without the need for a third rail, will initially be fitted on seven of the city region’s state-of-the-art class 777 trains.
Image credit: LCR Combined Authority