Estonia's Elron orders 10 more electric trains from Skoda Group

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Estonian railway operator Eesti Liinirongid (Elron) has ordered an additional 10 electric trains from Škoda Group, taking the total number of units to be supplied by Škoda to Elron to 16, with the first EMUs already in production.

Production is taking place at Škoda Group's production site in Ostrava in the Czech Republic. The modern trains will, among other things, serve Estonia’s newly electrified railway section between Tallinn and Tartu, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2024.

Škoda’s contract with Elron is worth almost €147m and the new trains will be built on the RegioPanter platform.

According to Škoda, thanks to its years of experience in the production of trains, the Ostrava production site can meet the very specific requirements of Estonia without any problems. In addition to the wider track gauge, the trains are designed as dual-system trains for 3 kV and 25 kV 50Hz power systems, so that they can serve both newly electrified railway sections and sections with older catenary lines.

In addition, Estonia is in a colder climate than is typical in other parts of Europe. Trains must therefore be able to withstand more challenging temperature conditions, especially in winter.

“Our single-deck electric units are proving very well in regional transport in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, where they are very popular and achieve the highest standards for modern and safe transport,” said Zdeněk Sváta, president of the Central East region at Škoda Group. “The first units have already been delivered to Latvia, which has similar characteristics to Estonia. This experience has enabled us to offer Elron a unique tailor-made solution. The client's trust in our products is the greatest reward for us, so we are glad that the customer decided to use the entire order and modern Škoda trains will be running in Estonia for decades to come.”

Lauri Betlem, chairman of the board of Elron, added, “In 2022, Elron served 7.1 million passengers. The need for new trains is great, and last summer, the Government of Estonia approved the order for an additional ten trains. With this decision, Elron's train fleet will get a significant addition over the next few years, growing by over 40%, which will significantly expand our opportunities to better serve passengers and intensify the timetables.”

According to Škoda, delivery of the first six trains is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2024.