It has been three months since Railcolor News reported about the transfer of the SNCF 807 to Spain. The TGV Duplex unit is tested ahead of the introduction of these high-speed trains. SNCF has changed its mind in trains branding – and the Ouigo España branding will be used, starting 15.03.2021.
The opening of the Spanish high-speed market is happening, and the selected operators are ordering new and testing existing high-speed trains before the launch. Most recently, SNCF has changed its mind with the use of a previously considered name of Falbalá and it will use the low-cost brand known from France: Ouigo.
Rielsfera, a subsidiary of French SNCF, has transferred an Alstom Avelia EuroDuplex unit to Spain for tests in June already. Since its arrival, it has been busy performing nightly authorization tests between Madrid and Barcelona, as captured by Juan Estévez:
On 22.09.2020, the actual start of operation on the Madrid – Barcelona line was announced, with five round trips a day. The starting day is set for 15.03.2021 and the company claims that the prices will be 50% below the current price rates.
The previous number of nine trains deployed for Spain has increased to 14 units. The whole fleet should also connect Madrid with Valencia, Alicante, Córdoba, Seville and Malaga , yet the start date of these lines has not been announced yet.
The arrival of Ouigo España will also mean that rolling stock will get a new design. In France the Ouigo trains a re blue, for Spain the operator has now presented white units with pink and light blue circles: