Alstom has drawn up concept designs for a double-deck train which it believes could offer the best traction option for HS2.
The plans were presented during a parliamentary reception hosted by Alstom on May 24.
The design builds upon the double-deck Duplex TGV trains Alstom has built for the French high-speed network, which use power cars at either end. It’s a deviation from the distributed traction AGV technology which has previously been linked with HS2.
Henrik Anderberg, acting managing director of Alstom UK & Ireland, said a double-deck train would be no higher than the single-deck option and only moderately more expensive to build. Double-deck carriages would also create 40 per cent more capacity than a single-deck solution.
The HS2 rolling stock contract has been valued at £7.5 billion and is expected to be awarded in 2019.
HS2 is looking to procure two fleets of trains: a ‘captive’ fleet built to international standards to operate solely on the high-speed network and a second ‘classic compatible’ fleet which is able to also operate on Britain’s conventional rail network.
Double-deck trains would only be feasible for the captive fleet, but Alstom said it was also interested in supplying cross-compatible single-deck trains.