MTR Express is to shorten journey times on some of its routes after receiving approval to increase the speed of its intercity trains.
The Swedish Transport Agency, Sweden’s rail regulator, has given the open access operator permission to raise the maximum speed of its FLIRT trainsets to 200 km/h, reducing journey times by up to 12 minutes on the Stockholm to Gothenburg route.
In seeking approval, MTR Express has carried out both simulations and live tests to prove the safety case for faster trains.
MTR Express’ chief operations officer, Martin Modéer, said the company had achieved something that ‘many in the industry thought was impossible’.
MTR launched its open access Stockholm to Gothenburg intercity service in 2015 in direct competition with the state-owned operator, SJ. Figures produced by the Centre of Transport Studies in Sweden show that the number of journeys on the Stockholm-Gothenburg corridor is estimated to have increased by around 40 per cent since then.
The new shorter journey times will be introduced from the December 2018 timetable change.