BULGARIA: TMH’s Metrowagonmash subsidiary has returned 12 Type 81-717.4/714.4 metro cars to Sofia Metro following their refurbishment.
Sofia Metro has 168 cars which were built at the Mytishchi plant in Russia. A pilot batch of eight vehicles was modernised under a contract signed in December 2018, and following their return to service in early 2020 the metro exercised an option for a further 40 to be refurbished. These are being overhauled in two batches of 12 cars and one of 16.
The work includes a refresh of the cabs, installation of new asynchronous traction equipment and weight reduction measures to reduce power consumption. The interiors have been fitted with wear-resistant seats and handrails as well as fire detection systems, and space has been provided for wheelchair users and pushchairs. The passenger information displays can switch between Bulgarian, which is written in the Cyrillic alphabet, and English.
The overhaul is expected to extend the life of the vehicles by 15 years, increase passenger and driver comfort and safety and reduce maintenance needs. The overhauled stock will operate as four-car sets on metro lines 1 and 2.