Alstom Transport, Bombardier Transportation UK Ltd, Hitachi Rail Europe, Patentes Talgo S.L.U and Siemens PLC have been shortlisted for the HS2 trains contract.
All five companies will be invited to tender for the £2.75 billion contract for at least 54 trains that will enter traffic from 2026. They will run on Phase 1 of HS2 between London Euston and Birmingham Curzon Street, but will be classic-compatible, and will serve York, Newcastle, Liverpool, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
The bidders will be invited to tender in spring 2018, and contracts will be awarded in 2019.
The trains will run at speeds of up to 225mph. The first trains are expected to roll off the production line in the early-2020s.
The successful bidder will maintain the trains from a new depot at Washwood Heath, Birmingham.
HS2 Minister Paul Maynard said: “Thousands of skilled British jobs and apprenticeships will be created by HS2, which gets a step closer as we reveal the companies shortlisted to build the high-speed trains.
“HS2 will see some of the world’s fastest trains connecting our great cities across the north and Midlands, creating an economy that works for everyone. But announcements like this show how the benefits of HS2 will resonate far beyond the opening of the new railway – HS2’s legacy of jobs and skills is already being created.”
Chris Rayner, HS2 Ltd Managing Director – Railway Operations, said: “It’s great to see such a strong line up of experienced high-tech manufacturing and design talent. Together with the successful bidder, HS2 will deliver some of the world’s most advanced rolling stock, engineered to provide seamless, accessible, fast and reliable journeys.
“Starting from 2026, our trains will be used by tens of thousands of people every day, transforming links across the Midlands and the North and providing much-needed extra capacity between Britain’s major cities.”