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RAPID RAIL: New climate-friendly high-speed train comes to Bucks and Herts

 Published on: 14th February 2022   |   By: Bryn Holmes   |   Category: Uncategorized

Chorleywood, Rickmansworth, Amersham, Chalfonts and other locations on the Aylesbury to London Marylebone railway route are enjoying the benefits of using the country’s first 100mph capable battery-diesel hybrid train.

The new ‘HybridFLEX’ vehicle is a product of a four-year partnership between operator Chiltern Railways, owner Porterbrook and tech company Rolls-Royce.

Using a 20-year-old two-carriage train, the new powerful power pack battery means that quieter and quicker journeys on the route are now possible, reducing noise by up to 75 per cent in urban areas and allowing the possibility of faster travel.

Originally launched last July for the 25-year anniversary of Chiltern Railways, it remained in the testing stage until the new launch date on February 7.

The vehicle’s environmental credentials are also impressive. Thanks to the new battery, up to 25 per cent of CO2 emissions each journey have been cut, as well as the production of nitrogen oxide and pollutants being reduced by 75 per cent.

District councillor Phil Williams, Lead Member for Environmental Services, Climate Change and Sustainability, said to CHORLEYWOODnews of the development:

“Anything that gets people out of their cars and onto a more environmental mode of transport like rail is a positive for the area.”

Speaking about the vehicle, Richard Allan, Chiltern Railway’s Managing Director, said:

“Chiltern Railways is determined to operate a railway that is as sustainable and environmentally friendly as possible.

“We have worked hard with our partners to fit a powerful battery power pack underneath a 20-year-old diesel train to make the train cleaner, quieter and quicker.”

The ‘HybridFLEX’ will initially operate only on the Aylesbury to London Marylebone route, but it is expected the train will also be put into use on the London to Oxford via Bicester Village line in several months’ time.

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