SWEDEN: National inter-city operator SJ AB put its next generation of train into commercial service on February 6, after the first of the 20 four-car EMUs was formally handed over on January 26.
Designated X55 by SJ, the Bombardier Regina Alfa EMUs are marketed as SJ 3000 to follow the ageing X2000 tilting trains which continue to work front-line services. Around eight of the 20 sets being assembled at Hennigsdorf have now been delivered, and the remainder are expected before the autumn timetable change.
SJ plans to use the X55s on medium-distance routes, replacing some locomotive-hauled trains and releasing X2000s for busier services. The first sets are operating on the East Coast Main Line between Stockholm and Sundsvall, replacing X40 double-deck EMUs. The next batch are expected to take over services to Östersund, Borlange and Mora. The X55s have ETCS onboard equipment, and will be able to run on the Botnabanan to Örnskoldsvik and Umeå, which is equipped with Level 2.
Each 107 m long unit can carry 64 first class and 181 second class passengers, and up to three sets can operate in multiple. Unlike the regional Regina EMUs which have 3+2 seating, the SJ3000s have 2+2 throughout, providing a spacious ambience in the wide-bodied sets. Much of the interior trim is pale wood, with upholstery in varying shades of grey.
All seats have power sockets, and first class seats have individual tables and reading lights. Most seating is arranged in airline style, apart from a few bays with tables adjacent to the bistro. One vehicle has a low-floor entrance with a built-in wheelchair lift leading to a second-class saloon with two wheelchair spaces and an accessible toilet.