Vivarail, pioneers of emission-free trains, today ran the UK’s first ever passenger-carrying diesel/battery hybrid train on the national network.

This huge achievement means that Vivarail has set a new standard for clean, green rail travel – and delivered another ground-breaking train!

The UK’s rail decarbonisation programme is getting into full swing and Vivarail’s initiatives will play a big part in making it a success.  In 2018 Vivarail successfully ran a pure battery train with a range of 60 miles between charges – the first modern production battery train in the country – and demonstrated that emission-free travel is possible today.

Today the Class 230 unit 230002 ran between Evesham and Moreton-in-Marsh as a hybrid with 2 battery driving motor cars and an intermediate car housing 4 diesel gensets.  The batteries are the primary traction source and are charged by the gensets – as well as by capturing energy through regenerative braking.  Simply through regenerative braking fuel consumption is reduced by at least 25% and thus emissions are much lower than a diesel train.

The train was undergoing a series of tests on the batteries and gensets in preparation for delivering the new fleet of trains for Transport for Wales. Identical diesel/battery trains will be running the service on the Wrexham-Bidston line where TfW has been determined to deliver quiet, low-emission trains to passengers.

Vivarail is looking forward to delivering the new trains fully tested and approved – and demonstrating how battery powered trains are a reality today.