PARIS Transport Authority has awarded a contract worth €695m to a consortium of Alstom, Bombardier and Technicatome for 161 five-car MF2000 steel-wheeled metro trainsets. The order follows a long evaluation process - bids originally had to be submitted to RATP in April 1998.

The order will replace about half the MF67 sets; the rest of the MF67 fleet is to be put through a life-extension programme. Alstom has a 63% share of the MF2000 contract, with responsibility for design, traction equipment, cabling, testing and commissioning. Each unit will have three motor cars fitted with Alstom’s Onix traction package, including IGBT converters feeding conditioned power to four three-phase traction motors on each motor car. Intended to give low life-cycle costs, the equipment is similar to that supplied to cars for the Washington metro. Regenerative braking will be complemented by mechanical tread brakes.

Bombardier’s €230m share of the work includes fabrication of the steel bodyshells, installation of windows and floors, plus assembly of the cabs. The shells will be put together and painted at its Crespin plant near Valenciennes.

Technicatome, which was involved over 10 years ago in the development of equipment for an experimental automated container terminal in Trappes near Paris, has a €47m share of the deal and will be responsible for project management and on-train safety systems.

A pre-series train will be delivered to Paris for testing on Line 2 by December 2003, with full production scheduled for mid-2004. The first series-built train will be delivered to Line 2 by December 2005. Deliveries for Line 5 will begin in mid-2008, and for Line 9 in mid-2011. The last cars will arrive by December 2015.

The trains are being designed to give Parisians higher standards of comfort. RATP has abandoned attempts to develop innovative designs with single axles, and each MF2000 car will have a pair of steerable bogies designed by Italian builder Ansaldobreda, which has a €8m share of the contract.

Each set will have seats for between 92 and 115 passengers, depending on the configuration selected. Floor height will be 30mm lower than on current vehicles. Three pairs of sliding plug doors will be provided on each side. The trains will have full-width inter-car gangways, and public address with microphones next to the internal alarms.

CAPTION: Saloons and driving cabs on the MF2000 fleet will be air-conditioned, and designed for low ambient noise

TABLE: Technical specification

Formation T+M+M+M+T

Power supply 750V DC 3rd Rail

Installed power kW 1236

Overall length mm 75600

Body width mm 2400

Gangway width mm 1200

Doorway opening mm 1650

Seating capacity per set 92 to 122

Seat width mm 490

Seating pitch mm 1600

Floor height above rail top mm 1015

Maximum speed km/h 70

Maximum acceleration m/s2 0·9

Braking rate m/s2 1·0