AUSTRALIA: The Victoria state government has announced plans to order a further 25 X’Trapolis electric multiple-units from Alstom to continue the renewal of the Melbourne suburban fleet.

To be assembled at Alstom’s Ballarat plant, the six-car units have been designated X’Trapolis 2.0. Alstom was commissioned in 2018 to develop an updated version of the 135 X’Trapolis EMUs that it had supplied between 2004 and 2018. Design is already underway, with manufacturing expected to start in mid-2022 for delivery by 2026. The order is expected to secure at least 750 jobs within the state.

The new units are intended to replace Comeng EMUs that are now reaching life-expiry. They will be deployed by Metro Trains Melbourne on the Craigieburn, Upfield and Frankston lines, which serve some of Melbourne’s fastest-growing suburbs.

The government has allocated A$986m in its 2021-22 state budget to fund the new trains and related improvements to the Craigieburn Train Maintenance Facility, where they will be based.

‘We’re designing and building Melbourne’s new train fleet right here in Victoria, delivering better journeys for Victorians in some of our fastest-growing suburbs’, said Acting Premier James Merlino when the order was announced on May 18. ‘These are trains made in Victoria, for Victorians, by Victorians — supporting local jobs at a time we need them most.’