Bombardier partners with Hitachi Rail to submit 2.75m HS2 bid

Hitachi's concept for high-speed rolling stock

Bombardier Transportation and Hitachi Rail Europe have agreed to submit a joint bid for the £2.75bn contract to supply a fleet of high speed trainsets for High Speed 2.

In November 2017 project promoter HS2 Ltd shortlisted Alstom, Bombardier Transportation UK, Hitachi Rail Europe, Patentes Talgo and Siemens for the rolling stock design, manufacturing and maintenance contract.

The formal tendering process is due to start later this year, with the contract expected to be awarded expected in late 2019 and entry into service planned for 2026.

Bombardier and Hitachi said the proposed partnership would build on their co-operation when supplying ETR1000 Frecciarossa high speed trainsets to Italy’s Trenitalia, and draw on their UK manufacturing plants in Derby and Newton Aycliffe, their UK supply chains and their networks of maintenance facilities.

Richard Hunter, Managing Director UK, Bombardier Transportation, says: “HS2 is a once in a lifetime opportunity to transform the nation’s transport network and we are very excited by the chance to play a key part in delivering it. By joining together in partnership with Hitachi we will combine both companies global high-speed expertise with unrivalled British experience, and help generate skills and prosperity across a number of UK regions.”

Hitachi Rail Managing Director Karen Boswell adds: “By joining together in partnership with Bombardier, we will draw on a huge wealth of UK experience and the best in modern technology, including our pioneering “bullet train” experience. Our aim is to deliver a new British icon that will be recognised around the world – a Spitfire for the British railway.”

The co-operation agreement would only cover HS2, and the companies said they would ‘remain competitors in all other markets and competitions.’

Alstom Transport, Patentes Talgo, Siemens and CAF have also been shortlisted.