A short video clip of Vivarail’s “D-Train”, now designated the Class 230, in action.
It’s rebuild of redundant London Underground D78 stock, replaced by new trains on the District Line. Their aluminium bodies and relatively new running gear and traction equipment give them quite a few more years of useful life, and the D-Train concept aims to make use of it.
It’s a diesel-electric, using new underfloor engine and generator sets to power the existing traction motors. The trains are intended for regional and commuter use, perhaps as a replacement for the unloved Pacers. Their only weakness is their top speed of only 60mph, which will render them unsuitable for some routes; even the Pacers can allegedly do 75.
It’s an interesting concept, which provides additional DMUs at far less cost than brand-new stock, and seems like an ideal short-term option for routes scheduled for electrification in the longer term.
But does anyone else read Vivarail, and think Vivarais, which is a preserved metre-gauge line in southern France? Or is it just me?