Siemens and Alstom compete for the next ICE generation

Dhe Deutsche Bahn leaves the rivals behind Siemens and Alstom are vying for a concept for the next generation of their ICE high-speed trains. The two train manufacturers should initially work out their ideas for the trains independently, but in cooperation with experts from the railways, as the network operator announced on Tuesday. Based on these findings, Deutsche Bahn intends to tender the specific contract for the development, construction and approval of the new ICE fleet in a second stage, which is to be used from the early 2030s. However, other manufacturers could also apply for this in the second half of 2023, Deutsche Bahn said.

The previous ICE generations were created under the leadership of Siemens, the French Alstom was also involved in the construction to varying degrees. “This gives us the opportunity to continue our long-standing partnership with Deutsche Bahn,” said Albrecht Neumann, who is responsible for rail vehicles at Siemens’ train division. But Alstom is also optimistic: “In Germany we have enormous development expertise, also and especially in the high-speed sector, and we know the German market very well,” said Germany boss Müslüm Yakisan.

Successor for ICE 3 wanted

He had brought up double-decker trains for the next ICE generation, which Alstom has in its range, but not Siemens. However, the railway continues to rely on single-deck trains that are a maximum of 400 meters long, reach speeds of more than 300 kilometers per hour and hold 950 passengers. But that is not a disadvantage for Alstom, said a spokesman. The trains should “set new standards in terms of energy efficiency and technical availability,” explained the Deutsche Bahn. They are to replace the ICE 3 that Siemens is building on the “Velaro” platform. The ICE 4, manufactured by a consortium of Siemens and Alstom, is based on a different platform.

The form of cooperation is forward-looking, explained Siemens manager Neumann: “Instead of supplying a fixed catalog of requirements, the most important features of the new ICE generation are worked out in cooperation with the customer.” possibilities are matched. An Alstom spokesman said the manufacturers would be paid for the development work.

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