[design] Stadler narrow-gauge EMUs for FART

In December 2020, Ferrovie Autolinee regionali Ticinesi (FART) ordered eight new narrow-gauge EMUs from Stadler Rail. The first trains were to be delivered in 2023 but the project had to be rescheduled. Now there is a new date for this ‘revolution’, plus the final design 

FART ordered four 3-car and four 4-car meter-gauge electric multiple units that will replace the older rolling stock on FART’s routes starting in November 2024. This is the first time Stadler will build new narrow-gauge multiple units for cross-border rail transport.

Artist impression Stadler Rail EMU for FART © Stadler Rail

Technical specifications:

  • 4x four-car units for the Locarno – Domodossola cross-border line – 63 m long, capacity 343 passengers, of whom 142 seated;
  • 4x three-car units for regional services Locarno – Camedo – 49 m long, capacity 264 passengers, of whom 109 seated.

The new, modern, and more efficient fleet will enable FART to meet the current needs of public transport and the tourism sector in the region. The multiple units fully comply with the Disabled Persons Act (LDis).

On 02.01.2024, FART unveiled the livery of these new trains. Blue and ivory are passé; They will be painted in three shades of brown, with only a blue accent ont he nose – just above the Swiss cross.

Artist impression Stadler Rail EMU for FART © Stadler Rail

Current rolling stock of FART

Newly delivered units will replace the existing rolling stock of FART. Almost the entire fleet was built between 1992 and 1994; Eight ABe4/6 units (number 51-58) were made by Vevey Technologies (mechanical) and ABB (electrical). Now, the fleet can be split into three- and four-car units:

3x ABe4/6 2-car units (can be used in double-traction)

The two-car unit ABe4/6. Photo credit: FART SA
  • 82 seats (18 first-class)
  • Vmax 80 km/h
  • Power output: 640 kW
  • Axis arrangement: Bo’2’Bo ‘
  • Length: 32 m

4x ABe4/8 3-car units

The longer version of the current FART train – ABe4/8. Photo credit: FART SA / Massimo Pedrazzini
  • in 2011, units 55-58 received an additional intermediate car;
  • Axis arrangement changed to Bo’2’2’Bo’;
  • after extension, units were renumbered to 45-48;
  • Increased capacity to 119 seats (31 first-class);
  • Length increased to 44 m.

In addition, an older ABDe6/6 unit from the 1960s complements the fleet during peak times. Unit 32 is named ‘Vallese’. For shunting and maintenance purposes, a Tm2/2 diesel shunter (number 9) completes the fleet of FART.