THE first of 18 LRVs that CRRC Tangshan is building for Porto Metro has rolled off the production line after eight months of assembly work. The vehicle is now ready to undergo testing.

Porto Metro signed a €49.6m contract in January 2020 for the new fleet with CRRC Tangshan, which won the order in competition with Siemens Mobility and Skoda Transportation. The contract includes maintenance over a period of five years.

The bi-directional, four-section LRVs will each have capacity for 252 passengers and seats for 64, according to Porto Metro. The maximum speed is 80km/h.

CRRC Tangshan says that the new fleet features a lightweight design, low energy consumption and low noise in operation.

According to CRRC Tangshan chairman, Mr Zhou Junnian, the project began in November 2021 and has overcome many challenges, including the impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic and developing a new design to European technical standards.

When the contract was signed, Porto Metro was expecting the first deliveries for testing to take place in the second half of 2021, with the remainder of the fleet following at a rate of one LRV per month until 2023.

The CRRC vehicles will join Porto Metro’s fleet of 72 Eurotram and 30 tram-train LRVs, both supplied by Bombardier.

The total fleet is being increased to 120 LRVs, as Porto Metro undertakes a €300m expansion programme that will add 6.25km and seven stations to the network.

This includes the new 3.1km underground Pink Line between São Bento and Casa da Música in the centre of Porto, and the 3.15km extension of the Yellow Line southwards from Santo Ovídio to Vila d'Este in Vila Nova de Gaia.

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