ETIHAD Rail has signed a contract with CRRC Qingdao Sifang for the supply of three 200km/h passenger trains, the Chinese manufacturer has confirmed.

The contract reportedly signed on January 31 includes an option for 20 additional trains and a 15-year maintenance agreement. The trains will consist of a diesel locomotive, five passenger coaches, and a driving trailer vehicle.

The trains are expected to enter service in 2025 and will offer first class, standard and family accommodation. Passengers will also benefit from air-conditioning and onboard Wi-Fi. CRRC says the new fleet will be adapted to operate in the hot desert climate, and will be manufactured to international standards.

Etihad Rail refused to comment on the story when approached by IRJ.

The UAE’s national railway confirmed a Dirhams 1.2bn ($US 330m) contract with CAF for an unspecified number of 200km/h trains in June 2022. It is planning to introduce passenger services between 11 cities across the UAE.

In addition, Etihad Rail and Oman Rail signed a $US 3bn agreement to construct a new railway between the two countries in September. The plan includes the operation of 200km/h passenger trains between Sohar, Al Ain and Abu Dhabi.

For detailed data on fleet orders from around the world, subscribe to IRJ Pro.

The January 2022 edition of IRJ included an update from Etihad Rail on construction of the second phase of the national network and its plans for the future. Digital subscribers can read the article here.