Stadler has developed a new broad-gauge tram and successfully introduced it onto the market, with LLC Transport Concession Company (TCC) in Saint Petersburg ordering 23 Metelitsa trams. The majority of the production work is being carried out at Stadler’s Minsk factory and in Switzerland. The handover date for the first six vehicles is scheduled for the end of July 2017.
For several years now, Stadler has been developing a new broad-gauge tram (1524 mm) for the Russian market, named Metelitsa (sometimes referred to as Metelica). The protoype is 26.7 meters long and 2.5 meter wide. The three-section light rail vehicle is available as uni- and bi-directional vehicle (type 853 and 85300M) with a maximum speed of 75 km/h. The concept is derived from the 843/84300M series trams which are being operated in cities such as Sint-Petersburg, Kazan and Minsk.
After being officially unveiled to the public at the 2014 IIHF World Championship in Minsk, the prototype went on to tour a number of cities in Russia, and was even awarded a prize by the public at a tram parade in Moscow. The Metelitsa was also on display during InnoTrans 2014:
And Stadler’s strategy has proved successful, with TCC in Saint Petersburg ordering 23 Metelitsa trams. It is the first order for this platform.
Stadler is thrilled to have successfully introduced a vehicle of its own design onto the market again. “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract and hope that our Metelitsa tram will help us win further tenders in Russia,” said Peter Spuhler, Owner and Group CEO of Stadler. Demand is certainly high, and there are currently several tenders open for broad-gauge trams in Russia. Overall, this equates to several thousand trams, which are expected to be ordered in the next few months – particularly in light of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
TCC is responsible for all development and construction work on the tram network in the Krasnogvardeysky District in east Saint Petersburg. The Metelitsa trams ordered from Stadler are scheduled to begin operating on the district’s new rail network as early as August 2017, offering operating staff and passengers alike the highest standards of comfort in urban transport.
The three-carriage low-floored tram boasts five double-leaf doors on either side, allowing passengers to embark and disembark with ease. Articulated joints for the bogies ensure minimum levels of noise and maximum comfort while the tram is in motion. Inside the vehicles, there are two separate areas for prams, wheelchairs and bicycles. The three-carriage bidirectional vehicles are 33.45 meter in length, have seats for 66 passengers, and have a total capacity of 370 passengers.
This contract is particularly important to Stadler, as the factory in Minsk had been suffering from underutilisation following the oil and gas crisis and the resulting fall in the price of the rouble. The new order from Saint Petersburg has eased the pressure on the factory to a certain extent; however, further orders will be needed to ensure full utilisation. We are also continuing to examine the possibility of relocating contracts from our Central European factories to our site in Minsk.