Trains manufactured by Spanish firm Talgo may soon undertake trial runs at speeds between 160 and 200 kmph on the existing tracks on the Delhi-Mumbai route. Depending upon the results of the trial runs, the railways will consider introduction of high-speed trains on other routes too, a senior Railway Ministry official said.
Talgo will conduct the time validation trial on Delhi-Mumbai corridor soon, the official said. The Spanish train maker has offered to test run their lighter and faster trains free of cost. “We will be issuing the permission letter to Talgo after getting the Railway Board’s approval for importing the rake to India. They (Talgo) have offered to do the trial with no cost to railways,” said the official.
The rake will be imported in knocked down condition and be assembled in India. If the Talgo train runs at speeds varying between 160 and 200 kmph on the existing infrastructure without any upgrade, the travel time between the two cities is expected to be cut down to about 12 hours from the current 17 hours.
Besides reducing travel time, Talgo’s lighter trains consume 30 per cent less energy, which will help railways reduce their power bill. The official said barring minor changes, there will be no need for overhauling the tracks for the trial run. The process required for this will kick off once the approval of the Railway Ministry has been received, the official said.
“A lot will depend on the trial on Delhi-Mumbai sector and, if the test run is successful, we may consider it for some more routes also,” he said. These trains are already running in several places in Asia and the US.