CAF has been awarded the contract to design, manufacture and supply a fleet of 43 trains for the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) by Transport for London (TfL). The contract will include a Fleet Support Agreement to provide technical support services and spares supply.

The state-of-the-art 5-car trains will be based on CAF’s hugely successful Metro vehicle design, with the first entering passenger service from 2023.

Thirty-three trains will replace DLR’s oldest rolling stock which is nearly thirty years old and 10 will increase frequency and capacity across the network.

The new trains will be a similar length to the current 3-car trains currently operating on the DLR but providing a number of customer improvements.  This includes the latest audio and visual real-time travel information, air conditioning, mobile device charging points, multi-use areas – which can accommodate pushchairs, bicycles and luggage – and dedicated wheelchair spaces.

Richard Garner, CAF’s UK Director comments: ‘We are delighted to be awarded such a significant contract by Transport for London to supply trains for the UK’s busiest light railway.

‘CAF’s Metro vehicle design is ideally placed to meet the specific demands of this unique operation, not only increasing passenger capacity, but delivering the very latest in comfort, convenience and safety for passengers. These trains will support the Mayor of London’s Transport Strategy to make London a greener, more accessible place to live, work and visit as well as supporting new jobs and homes.

‘It is the latest in a number of recent awards including the supply and maintenance of DMU’s for the Wales and Borders Franchise, the rehabilitation of 43 RER MI2N units for the Paris Metro network and the supply and maintenance of 29 regional diesel-electric units for the Australian state of New South Wales.’

Jon Fox, TfL’s Director of Rail and Sponsored Services, said: ‘Replacing the oldest trains on the DLR and introducing a new modern fleet will ensure the railway continues to support the current and future growth in the Docklands area.  With walk-through carriages, real time travel information, air conditioning and mobile device charging points, the new trains will provide customers with a more comfortable and reliable service, replacing rolling stock that are nearly 30 years old and coming to the end of their operational life.’

The modernisation of the DLR is a key part of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy to make London a greener, more accessible place to live, work and visit as well as supporting new jobs and homes. The investment in improving public transport will help reduce reliance on the car and contribute to the Mayor’s target of 80 per cent of journeys made by public transport, cycling or walking by 2041.