NORWEGIAN train leasing company Norske Tog has announced that Stadler has been awarded a contract to supply 17 long-distance EMUs for the Oslo - Bergen route, with an option for up to 83 additional trains.

In January 2022, Norske Tog announced that it had shortlisted Stadler, Alstom Transport Norway, CAF and Talgo to bid for a framework contract to supply up to 100 new trains for long-distance services, with an initial order for 17 sets worth up to an estimated Nkr 8bn ($US 910m) at the time. The new trains were to include sleeping compartments, which could be converted into seats compartments during the day, as well as reclining seats.

With Stadler now being awarded the contract, production of the new trains will start in 2024 with the first EMUs arriving for testing in Norway from 2025. The new trains will enter traffic on the Bergen Line from 2026, replacing older trains that are nearing the end of their working life.

An image showing how the interior of the cars with reclining seats will look when the trains are in service. Photo credit: Norske Tog

The new Flirtnex long-distance trains will have a maximum speed of 200km/h and will be formed of eight cars with a total capacity of up to 542 seated passengers. They will also provide more flexible accommodation than the existing fleet, with a combination of reclining seats and two- and four-bed sleeping compartments. During the day, the sleeping compartments will change to private seating areas for either families or business travellers, while the reclining seats will be available for use both during daytime travel and overnight.

An impression of how one of the new long-distance trains' family areas will appear when in service. Photo credit: Norske Tog

The trains will also feature a bistro car, family areas and ample space for luggage.

“The train should not solely be a means of transport, but also an experience in itself and a place where you enjoy staying,” says Norske Tog project manager, Ms Sille Svenkerud Førner.

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