UK: The first of 10 Stadler Class 88 Eurodual UK locomotives for leasing company Beacon Rail, fitted with ABB electric and Caterpillar diesel traction equipment and to be operated by open access freight and charter operator Direct Rail Services, was presented at InnoTrans on September 20 .

Based on the successful 2 800 kW Class 68 Eurolight diesel locomotive, this 160 km/h Bo'Bo' for passenger and freight work offers 4 MW of traction power under 25 kV 50 Hz supply plus a 708 kW diesel powerpack for use on non-electrified lines. Built in Stadler's recently acquired plant in Valencia, the loco has been certified ahead of schedule following two months of testing at the Velim test circuit in the Czech Republic. It complies with UK national and European TSI standards while fitting the narrower UK loading gauge. Commercial operation is expected to start 'soon', Stadler says.

Built using a modular approach, the Class 88 shares many common design elements with the Eurodual family that Stadler is offering for the wider European market. This design is available as four- or six-axle variants for all loading gauges and supply voltages, rated at up to 7 MW with a maximum speed of 200 km/h under electric operation. Different diesel engine modules with EU Stage IIIB compliance and rated at up to 3 000 kW will also be on offer.

Depending on the configuration, axleloads can range from 18 to 22·5 tonnes. A prototype is under construction and tests will start in spring 2017. Stadler expects to focus first on gaining type approval for France, Spain, Germany and Scandinavia.