….as Franco-Spanish battle Rages over for Intercity Trains
SNCF wants to quickly order about 15 hydrogen trains from Alstom, which are less polluting than diesel trains. The manufacturer’s CEO, Henri Poupart-Lafarge, says he is ready to accelerate.
Will hydrogen trains replace diesel trains? The SNCF wishes to order quickly a fortnight to the Alstom group. Alstom CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge declares himself “completely ready”.
In concrete terms, “the first trains will be available in 2021 or 2022”. Alstom says it is ready to provide “forty or fifty trains a year”, and “gradually ramp up”.
Hydrogen trains made in France
Alstom’s boss explained that “the global competence center for hydrogen is in Tarbes”,adding that “even the train we supplied to Germany has its propulsion designed and manufactured in Tarbes, France.”
“As for the cars themselves , they will be manufactured in Reichshoffen (near Strasbourg, Ed), which is our center of competence for regional trains “,he said
SNCF wants to see all diesel trains disappear by 2035 – there are still a thousand.
“It’s quite realistic,” according to Henri Poupart-Lafarge.
Meanwhile ,a Franco-Spanish battle is raging for the future Intercity trains.
This summer, Alstom has recorded several large orders, including twelve new TGVs for the SNCF, for more than 300 million euros.
But according to the specialized letter Mobilettre, the French will lose an essential market: the new trains Corail Paris-Clermont and Paris-Toulouse – a budget of 800 million euros.
The production of these new trains would be attributed to Alstom’s Spanish competitor, the CAF group.
“The decision is not made and we are confident,” says Henri Poupart-Lafarge, who defends the candidacy of his group.
Accirding to him “Alstom is 10 000 people in France (…) I am a little shocked by the campaign. We are told that the order is promised to our Spanish competitor, but by what right? “
Henri Poupart-Lafarge goes further: “Our Spanish competitor employs a hundred people in France (…) No one can believe that such an order can be made in a workshop of a hundred people.This is a joke!”
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