Turbostar-based HybridFLEX launch

Britain’s first hybrid train was formally launched on July 21, with Porterbrook CEO Mary Grant declaring on decarbonisation: “We’re not waiting to 2035 or 2040. We’re doing things now.”

Unveiling of the Turbostar-based HybridFLEX took place at London Marylebone, in a ceremony that also marked 25 years since the launch of Chiltern Railways. Following the end of the formal ceremony, the HybridFLEX took invited guests to Bicester.

Chiltern Railways MD Richard Allan talked of a “very special occasion”, adding: “As well as celebrating our heritage, it’s right that we look to the future.” He described HybridFLEX as a “fantastic team effort”.

The launch follows testing of converted Turbostar 168329 at the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway earlier in the year (RAIL 933). The HybridFLEX delivers emission-free operation when running on battery power, and reduces CO2 emissions by 25%, nitrous oxide by 70% and particulates by 90%.

Allan said the converted diesel multiple unit is “cleaner, greener, it’s much better for the environment”, as well as being “so smooth, so quiet, and it feels like you’re in the train equivalent of an electric car”.

To read the full story, see RAIL 937.

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