At the same time, a manufacturing workshop specially dedicated to the assembly of the trains was inaugurated at the Savigliano site in the presence of Henri Poupart-Lafarge, president of Alstom Transport, Joseph Deiss, president of Alstom Switzerland, and Jeannine Pilloud, head of passenger division of SBB.
The first train set has just started the fitting phase, and the first body-shells of the second train are being assembled. In May 2014, the first train will perform homologation runs in Germany as well as acceptance runs in Italy, Switzerland and Germany.
Two trains are scheduled to be handed over to SBB by the end of 2014. As of spring 2015, SBB intends to operate these trains on the Gotthard line for the EuroCity trains to Milan. Thus, the new trains complement the Pendolino ETR 610 of the first series being reliably operated on the Simplon line.
“We are glad to have achieved the important milestone of the handover of the body-shells and thereby to have reassured the trust placed in us by SBB,” Deiss said. “The Alstom team is strongly committed to delivering these new Pendolino ETR 610 trains on time and to the complete satisfaction of SBB.”
Pilloud said "The Pendolino ETR 160 trains are very popular with our customers and will give us an additional drive for the North-South traffic. And on top, we are regularly introducing new customer services – such as print-at-home- und mobile-tickets for international connections as well as access to the first-class class lounges in Italy"
In its seven cars, the Pendolino ETR 610 accommodates up to 430 passengers in comfort seats and runs at a maximum speed of up to 250 km/h. Seats are equipped with individual reading lights, electric sockets and a reclining function. They are aligned with the panoramic windows which allow passengers to benefit from natural light and enjoy the scenery. A video surveillance system ensures maximum safety.
The Pendolino ETR 610 cross-border train sets for SBB have been designed to meet the European interoperability standards (TSI) and will have Atlas installed.