THROUGH light rail services have been introduced between Karlsruhe and Heilbronn, increasing the regional tram-train network to 240route-km. Operator AVG has leased the 25 km Eppingen - Heilbronn line from DB, and double-tracked and electrified it at 15 kV at a cost of DM72m.

A new connection at Heilbronn Hbf allows the dual-mode vehicles to reach a new 1·6 km double-track tramway through the city centre, which cost DM66m. This is electrified at 750V DC, and has stops at Karl-Schumacherplatz, Rathaus and Harmonie. Journey time for the 70 km between the centre of Karlsruhe and the centre of Heilbronn is 81min, and the line is expected to carry around 12000 passengers/day. Stadtwerke Heilbronn has contributed 10 dual-system cars, purchased with a 50% subsidy from the Land of Baden-Württemberg.

The line through Heilbronn is to be continued 1·5 km via Friedensplatz, Jägerhaus and Trappensee to join the existing 25·5 km railway to Öhringen, which should be reached in 2003-04. There will be 21 stops, and eight more cars will be necessary. Total cost will be DM98m. A further extension to Neckarsulm is also envisaged.