Siemens has presented the first prototype of the Rhine-Ruhr Express (RRX) and will begin testing of the multiple-unit electric train at the Siemens Test and Validation Center (PCW) in Wegberg-Wildenrath.
All seven pre-series trains will be commissioned at the PCW and complete extensive tests before their first test runs on the public railway network. The RRX is scheduled to enter service at the end of 2018.
"The start of tests at the PCW shows that we're right on schedule with the RRX project," said Sabrina Soussan, CEO of Siemens' business with high-speed and regional trains and locomotives. “We're testing here whether the trains are fit for their daily service in and between the cities in North Rhine-Westphalia. Each train of the entire RRX fleet will be commissioned right here, virtually on the doorstep of the public rail network.”
In March 2015, Siemens was commissioned by Nahverkehr Rheinland (NVR), Nahverkehr Westfalen-Lippe (NWL), Schienenpersonennahverkehr Rheinland-Pfalz Nord (SPNV-Nord), the Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Ruhr (VRR) and the Nordhessischer Verkehrsverbund (NVV) to deliver 82 multiple-unit electric Desiro HC trains and provide their maintenance for a period of 32 years. The order is worth more than €1.7 billion.
The RRX fleet is based on the Desiro platform, with each train consisting of four cars. The first and last car have one passenger deck, while the two middle cars are double-deckers. The train has a seating capacity of 400, a top speed of 160 km/h and a driver assistance system for look-ahead braking and acceleration. They also feature Wi-Fi access, socket outlets, advanced information systems and energy-efficient traction units and air-conditioning.