SPAIN: National operator RENFE has awarded CAF a €290m contract to supply 28 electric trainsets equipped with batteries to enable them to cover short distances on non-electrified routes or during a power supply failure.

Equipped to operate under catenary energised at 1·5 kV or 3 kV DC and 25 kV 50 Hz, the 1 668 mm gauge units are intended for use on Media Distancia services, and will be designed to run at up to 200 km/h. CAF said they would feature ‘cutting-edge on-board technology, on-board passenger accessibility and comfort’, including facilities for people with reduced mobility and visual or hearing impairments.

The contract announced on October 11 includes options for RENFE to order up to 42 more trainsets. It also provides for RENFE and CAF to maintain 17 of the trains jointly for 15 years, following the operator’s standard practice since 2005. The remaining 11 will be maintained exclusively by RENFE Fabricación y Mantenimiento.

The order forms part of RENFE’s 2019 fleet renewal programme which has a budget of €4·6bn. This provides for the purchase of 418 trainsets to replace around half of the current fleet used on Cercanías, Media Distancia, metre gauge and high speed services operated under public service obligation contracts.

So far 211 EMUs valued at €2·26bn have been ordered from Stadler and Alstom for Cercanías services, while CAF is to supply 26 EMUs and five electro-diesel units worth €258m for the metre gauge routes.