The Victorian Government has reached an agreement and will work with Bombardier Transportation Australia to finalise the design of new bogies for new standard gauge VLocity trains.
Bogies are the essential component under the train that bear the load and contain the axles, suspension and breaks. As VLocity trains have not previously been fitted with standard gauge bogies, this component will take the longest to design, construct and gain safety accreditation for the new North East trains.
Detailed design of the new standard gauge bogie has recently commenced and will take up to 12 months until they reach the production, accreditation and track testing stage.
The full build of the new long-haul VLocity trains that will run between Albury-Wodonga and Melbourne will take two years to complete.
Starting this work now will ensure the new rolling stock is available when the $235 million upgrade of the North East line is completed, as part of the $1.7 billion Regional Rail Revival, a joint initiative of the Australian and Victorian Governments.
The upgrade will bring the track up to Victorian Class 2 standard – the necessary standard before the modern, long-haul VLocity trains can operate between Melbourne and Albury/Wodonga.
The Labor Government’s investment in regional trains has provided a 40 per cent increase in regional rail services, with V/Line now running more than 2,000 services every week.
The Government has also invested $15 million to improve comfort and reliability on the existing standard gauge Classic Fleet trains, including facilitating an extra, fourth train to operate along the North East line, to reduce train cancellations as a result of a train fault.