PKP’s Pendolino train in Savigliano. Photo Alstom.
The Polish Government has been cuddling up to Alstom, the builders of PKP’s special fleet of non-tilting Pendolinos. Today, 21 June 2013, Polish Prime Minister, Donald Tusk,, accompanied by the Minister of Regional Development, Mrs Elzbieta Bienkowska, visited Alstom’s turbine factory in Elbląg, Poland. On 17 June, the Undersecretary of State responsible for Poland’s railways, Andrzej Massel met his Italian counterpart Rocco Girlanda on Alstom’s site in Savigliano, Italy. The event was part of the official presentation to the board of PKP and PKP Intercity of the first Pendolino train for Poland.
The event is seen as a significant milestone in the €665m contract signed between Alstom and PKP IC in May 2011 for the delivery of 20 Pendolinos. The contract also covers the construction of the train depot in Grochow district of Warsaw and the maintenance of the trains for 17 years. The 250 km/h (156 mph) Pendolinos are scheduled to go into service from December 2014 and will connect northern and southern Poland, linking the Gdansk-Gdynia-Sopot Tricity, Warsaw, Cracow, and Katowice.
Rather like the wicked fairy in the tale of Sleeping Beauty, Dyspozytor, was not invited to the champagne-popping and feasting. So instead, he got out his wand and… a puff of smoke and lots of red stars appear and there’s Andrzej Massel sitting inside the Pendolino, but something is not right, Andrzej Massel is too big, or the seat’s too small, or… .
The smoke settles and all is clear, the Pendolino bodies are tapered to stay within the loading gauge when they tilt. The Polish Pendolinos have the same narrow bodies. The 4-in-a-row narrow seats are designed around the Mediterranean-diet derrière, but the average Polish backside is a much more substantial affair. Oh dear!
- BTWT – PKP IC orders Pendolino, but tilting trains won’t tilt
- BTWT – Pendolino – Massel hits back at critics
- Railway Gazette – PKP Intercity signs Pendolino contract
- Alstom – In Savigliano, the first EIC Premium Pendolino becomes a reality!
- PKP IC – Nowa kategoria Express InterCity Premium – komfort dla każdego pasażera
- Alstom – Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk visited Alstom factory in Elbląg