South Western Railway has showcased the first of its Class 701 Aventra EMUs ordered from Bombardier for suburban services into Waterloo.
SWR has ordered 60×10-car and 30×5-car units from Bombardier, financed by Rock Rail. The first three trains (two five-car and one 10-car) have been completed, with the second 10-car unit on the production line.
The first four trains are for type testing; the first series production unit to be delivered to SWR will be Train 5, which is planned to move south for on-network testing early in the New Year. Entry into passenger service is planned for mid-2020, with current plans seeing the first ‘701s’ entering service on the Reading line. A 12-month introduction programme is due to see the full fleet in service by mid-2021; this has been accelerated from the 17 months originally planned, in part to catch up with delays which have resulted from the software problems facing earlier Aventra builds.