“We are happy to state that the popularity of night train travel has increased by 17 percent compared to 2018. With these new buses, we want to meet our customers’ wishes and further develop the travel experience. For example, working and eating in your own cabin will be even more comfortable in the future”, says Elisa MarkulaCEO of VR.
The new buses will be in use by the end of 2025. They operate on night train routes, i.e. from Helsinki, Turku and Tampere to Oulu, Rovaniemi, Kemijärvi and Kolar as part of existing night train formations. VR’s current night train fleet consists of 80 sleeping cars and 33 coaches.
Škoda Transtech won the tender for VR’s new night train carriages. Sleeping cars and car transport cars are manufactured at Škoda Transtech’s Otanmäki factory in Kajaani.
“Our night train buses are a good example of modern rolling stock design, which helps develop rail transport as an attractive alternative. The deal strengthens the order book of our Otanmäki factory and maintains the area’s vitality and competitiveness,” says Juha VierrosCEO of Škoda Transtech.
The acquisition also includes the option to buy an additional 30 sleeping cars and 30 car transport cars. These would make it possible to increase the number of night trains or routes in the future and to replace the old blue sleeping cars that will end their service life in the early 2030s.
Night train service is part of the contract service between VR and the Ministry of Transport and Communications. VR will finance the acquisition with its own funds, and the Ministry of Transport and Communications will reimburse VR for part of the acquisition costs in accordance with the contract transport agreement.
Source: The Nordic Page