New Delhi, India (Urban Transport News): The national transporter Indian Railways has finally planned to launch sleeper-version of semi-high speed Vande Bharat trains to connect long-distance cities.
Railway has floated a global tender for the design and manufacturing of 200 sleeper versions of the Vande Bharat trains. The tender notice has been issued on April 27, 2022with a closing date of 26 July 2022. The new sleeper trains will be air-conditioned and will be used on long and medium distances.
The scope of tender includes design, manufacturing-cum-maintenance of the new Vande Bharat sleeper trains. The scope also includes the need to upgrade the available existing infrastructure and the development of additional infrastructure. The upgradation works will take place at either Marathwada Rail Coach Factory in Latur or the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai, the tender states. The first pre-bid meeting will be held on May 20, 2022.
According to the tender notice, the Rolling Stock manufacturer has to deliver the trains in 82 months, which means 6 years and 10 months. The 16-car sleeper train will have a minimum of 11 AC 3-tier coaches, 4 AC 2 tier coaches and one First Class AC coach. The 20-car sleeper Vande Bharat train will have 15 AC 3-tier coaches, 4 AC 2 tier coaches, and 1 First Class AC coach. The 24-car version will have 19 AC 3-tier coaches, 4 AC 2 tier coaches, one First Class AC coach. The new sleeper Vande Bharat trains will be designed for a maximum speed of 160kmph and a testing speed of 180kmph. The trains shall be designed for a life of 35 years.
The first Vande Bharat Trains were first introduced in 2019 on the Delhi-Varanasi and Delhi-Katra routes. The train boasts of several firsts for Indian trains such as European-style rotating seats, automatic doors with sliding footsteps and a bullet train style look and a modular driving cabin. The "engine-less" trains have regenerative braking and faster acceleration and deceleration enabling a substantial reduction in train travel time.