Hector Rail provides traction services to other operators and does not plan to operate passenger services
itself, but will in future be able to offer complete trains for hire. The company is already working with Veolia in the Swedish passenger market.
According to Hector Rail, there is currently no coaching stock available on the Swedish market capable of operating at speeds exceeding 160km/h. Hector Rail already has a fleet of Siemens Taurus electric locomotives, which can operate at up to 230km/h.
The coaches will need extensive refurbishment before they can enter service with their new owner, including work to prepare them for 200km/h operation. The vehicles, which were acquired by NS from German Rail (DB) in 2000 were limited to 140km/h running in the Netherlands due to the deactivation of the magnetic brakes and installation of a new static transformer under the floor.
The coaches will also undergo interior refurbishment, although Hector Rail says the layout, fittings and finish will be determined by the end customer.
150 ICK coaches were delivered to German Federal Railways from 1963 onwards, and were acquired by NS to address a shortage of inter-city coaches prior to the delivery of new double-deck emus. The coaches were withdrawn by 2009 and offered for sale by NS Financial Services. Most have been stored in the open for many years and the asking price for the vehicles is understood to have fallen significantly since the coaches were first put on the market.