Hitachi launch first Intercity Express built in Durham

Hitachi launches its first Intercity Express train built at its manufacturing plant in County Durham.

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Hitachi: New trains will 'boost capacity and reliability' on Great Western and East Coast

Karen Boswell, managing director of Hitachi Rail Europe, speaking at the unveiling of the new train today. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

The first UK-built Intercity Express (IEP) train has been unveiled at Hitachi in County Durham.

It is one of 122 express trains which are part of the Government-funded £5.7 billion Intercity Express Programme designed to boost capacity, reliability and comfort for passengers.

Speaking at the unveiling, Karen Boswell, managing director of Hitachi Rail Europe, said:

Hitachi is building 122 new intercity trains, and these more modern trains will offer more capacity for passengers, more reliable journeys, and 21st century technology.

These trains will run on the Great Western mainline from 2017 and the East Coast mainline from 2018.

From Inverness to Swansea, Aberdeen to Oxford, connecting the communities the length and breadth of Britain.

– Karen Boswell, managing director of Hitachi Rail Europe

All the trains are set to be in service by 2020.

The first Class 800 train was built at Hitachi's Kasado works in Japan, but the majority of the 866-carriage fleet will be manufactured in the UK.

A total of 110 IEP trains will be built in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham.

They are capable of running at 140mph, although will be limited to 125mph unless rail tracks are upgraded.

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