Sydney double-deck EMU delivery from CRRC factory

AUSTRLIA: CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles has shipped the first of the next batch of Waratah Series 2 double-deck electric multiple-units for Sydney Trains, 18 months after the contract was signed.

Sydney double-deck EMU at CRRC factory

An initial 24 Waratah Series 2 sets were ordered from Downer EDI in December 2016. In February 2019 the New South Wales government announced that it would ‘fast-track’ the delivery of a further 17 units to accommodate growing demand.

The Series 2 EMUs are similar to the 78 eight-car Waratah sets delivered in 2011-14 by the Downer-led Reliance Rail consortium under a PPP contract. Construction was outsourced to CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles, which had manufactured the bodyshells for the original fleet. The first build began entering service in September 2018.

Sydney double-deck EMU video conference

Although production of the latest batch was affected by the coronavirus pandemic, CRRC said the project team had worked hard to overcome ‘multiple adverse factors’. These included staff quarantine and disruptions to the supply of materials. The manufacturer also incorporated lessons learned from the previous units.

Each EMU is formed of four motor and four trailer cars, and has a maximum speed of 130 km/h in normal operation. CRRC said the trains meet Australian standards as well as ‘the most advanced international standards’, and would be ‘safe, comfortable and energy-saving with a relatively long operation life’.