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ScotRail HST fleet plans

The arrival in Scotland of 27 refurbished High Speed Trains in 2017/18 paves the way for their introduction in June-December 2018.

This is dependent on them being released by First Great Western as electrification is completed between London and Bristol/Oxford. The HSTs will displace Class 170 diesel units on the services from Edinburgh and Glasgow to Stirling, Perth, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness.

Before the trains enter service - there will be 14 four-car sets (two Class 43 power cars plus four carriages) and 13 five-car sets (2+5) - they will be fully refurbished with new seats and tables, new floor coverings and carpets, re-coated ceilings, WiFi and power sockets, improved LED lighting, and the exterior slam doors will be replaced by power-operated ones (in line with the PRM-TSI regulations).

  • For much more on this story, read RAIL 782, published on September 2.  

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  • Matthew - 01/09/2015 10:55

    Good for Scotland No doubt the 170's might compliment the 185's on Trans Pennine or go further south as usual. What about using some old HST's on Trans-Pennine?

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 01/09/2015 11:49

    Class 43 MK2/MK3 HST's to be moving to Scotland should improve Scotland's railways and to be operated on services in the highlands plus new EMU trains to be ordered for the newly electrified Glasgow-Edinburgh routes and in Southern Scotland and the Class 321's cascaded from London Midland & Great Northern to be used working along side the Class 320's for Glasgow Suburban services and the cascaded 321's are to be 3 carriages with a spare car to be kept at depots. I think Scotland would benefit the need to have more older trains that are cascaded from England. With England getting new trains for the GWML, ECML, Thameslink Core route and other routes in England and Wales to have the former London Underground D stocks that are converted to DEMU Class 230 trains to replace the Pacer trains that are to be scrapped.

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  • Ben H - 01/09/2015 18:20

    Introducing the Hitachi electro-diesel Class 800s to the East Coast before the Great Western, seems to be the most realistic method to release HST/Intercity 125 sets 'on-time' for ScotRail. The East Coast has had electric trains since 1989-91. A focus primarily on modifying platform edges would make the whole route compliant for the 26 metre Class 800 cars. As their planned test journeys on the East Coast expand, driver training could be incorporated so that there is sufficient competence to launch Class 800 services on East Coast in 2017 or earlier. As for the reduction in the length of the HSTs when operating for ScotRail, this would mean 900hp per car in a 2+5 set and 1,125 hp per car in a 2+4. Even the Class 185 Pennine DMUs have no more than 750hp per car. That the HSTs would be operating at lower speeds than they do now would make the fuel consumption per passenger less eye-watering. However I would still prefer for them to be used with more than 5 cars. It would mean capacity increases on ScotRail routes or the ability to halve frequencies (but retain the same capacity) and release extra Class 170s from where they may be operating in 6-car formations. Longer (and fewer) HST formations for ScotRail would also allow more Class 43 power cars to be used on major non-electrified long-distance routes such as Cross Country.

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  • Michael Bowles - 01/09/2015 18:46

    Have to ask why aim for such short sets or trains?is it to make trains look full?

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    • Steven Rawson - 03/09/2015 20:18

      Most platform lengths further north are quite short, and cant accommodate full length sets.

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      • Gizzy - 07/09/2015 11:15

        Are all the platforms long enough for 2+5 car trains? Seems strange not to make the whole fleet have 5 coaches, and would certainly make operations more flexible....

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    • Niall Laybourne - 23/05/2016 21:04

      It's to allow them to accelerate as fast as units, and therefore keep to times of lighter trains, or faster.

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  • MullySoft (FB) - 06/09/2015 20:28

    The Class 800s will run Edin to Aberdeen by Virgin/Stagecoach I do believe. Scotrail/abellio will acquire these 43's consists thru Rolling stock leasing companies (ROSCOs) The electro-diesel Class 800 units are also designed to be convertible to electric only operation by removal of underfloor engines. Very good article as I live in Dundee and look forward to the 43's in Saltire consists livery!

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  • Darren from Skegness - 15/12/2015 18:57

    Unlike North of England, Scotlands railways are a devolved matter so its up to Scotland what they want for the railways. Whereas the English government gives the North the older trains such as pacers. Scotland has already placed an order for 50 new electric trains and got 40 new Class 380s in 2011 so your argument is pretty invalid as far as I'm concerned. They dont need crappy trains like we do in the North, we need their trains which they class as being outdated which obly date back to 1999 and 2005.

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  • paul - 27/12/2015 00:40

    Hardly a capacity increase then if only 4 or 5 carriages may as well keep the 170 or 158 combintaion

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  • paul - 27/12/2015 00:40

    Hardly a capacity increase then if only 4 or 5 carriages may as well keep the 170 or 158 combintaion

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  • paul - 27/12/2015 00:40

    Hardly a capacity increase then if only 4 or 5 carriages may as well keep the 170 or 158 combintaion

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  • paul - 27/12/2015 00:42

    The Highland chieftain is a full set and manages perfectly well its prob more to do with acceleration and time keeping with a shorter set

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  • CF - 21/01/2016 12:18

    Looking forward to these coming to Scotrail But 14 4 Cars and 13 5 Cars Trains, even every one know for the HST is too short. I think if you extend them to 6 and 7 Coaches that will be a better option.

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  • gordon - 20/03/2016 15:50

    About time if it happens

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  • Jimmy - 19/04/2017 22:01

    All efforts to improve the Central Belt - Highland connection are welcome. We in the North need better links for recruitment in key areas and in tourism. With more luggage space!

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