Alstom get EU approval to buy Bombardier and will soon own Derby...

Energy

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Surely a UK plant and UK expertise are far more useful, seeing that the UK railway has many unique aspects which make local knowledge useful. It's also a very big market, the UK has bought a lot of trains in the last 20 years.
A lot of trains are getting bought now and a lot were in the early 2000s, its just the orders in the early 2000s were going to Adtranz/Bombardier and Siemens because of the bad reliability of the Coradias and Junipers. If the trains carry on to get built well (but they need better software...) then I think Derby will be fine.

The draw to a UK plant is that operators like to say that the train is built (even if it is only assembled) in Britain, this means that the train being built/assembled here can influence if the train maker gets the order. However this isn't necessary as Stadler have been getting orders lately however this is probably because the level access makes the trains more compelling especially for the metro operations a lot of Stadlers will be on, the decision to order Stadler trains has still been criticised a little though as, for example, when the Tyne & Wear new trains were ordered there was some complaining that it didn't go to Hitachi which have an assembly plant in the UK.
while Talgo are investigating UK assembly too
Talgo plan to export to other countries as well from their Scotland factory (notice factory as it is planned that it will make its own body shells after a few years of just being an assembly plant), I think they said that they just need a major order for the factory and it will start construction, also that this order doesn't even have to be from the UK but could be for the export market.
 
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CTS1990

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Surely a UK plant and UK expertise are far more useful, seeing that the UK railway has many unique aspects which make local knowledge useful. It's also a very big market, the UK has bought a lot of trains in the last 20 years.

AND the UK is becoming less laissez-faire too when it comes to local jobs, it's no coincidence that CAF have opened a UK factory to assemble trains, Siemens are building one to built the new Tube stock while Talgo are investigating UK assembly too
Ideally, these assembly lines would become proper production plants in the near future. It's all well and good importing bodyshells from the EU, but that may become very difficult after the end of this year. Steel can still be produced (just about) in the UK, although perhaps not in sufficient quantities for the rail industry, apart from the rails themselves.

No doubt Siemens, Alstom et al have a 'Plan B' 'C' 'D' etc if there is no substantial deal between the EU and the UK, which is effectively a given now...otherwise, there would be no business case to open new facilities in a country which has just exited the European single market with no onward trading arrangements.
 

Mikey C

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Ideally, these assembly lines would become proper production plants in the near future. It's all well and good importing bodyshells from the EU, but that may become very difficult after the end of this year. Steel can still be produced (just about) in the UK, although perhaps not in sufficient quantities for the rail industry, apart from the rails themselves.

No doubt Siemens, Alstom et al have a 'Plan B' 'C' 'D' etc if there is no substantial deal between the EU and the UK, which is effectively a given now...otherwise, there would be no business case to open new facilities in a country which has just exited the European single market with no onward trading arrangements.
I suppose the flip argument would be that the UK plants are purely to service the UK anyway. UK rail exports to mainland Europe are minimal and have always been
 

LNW-GW Joint

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I suppose the flip argument would be that the UK plants are purely to service the UK anyway. UK rail exports to mainland Europe are minimal and have always been
The persistent problem is that the UK cannot support total manufacturing for its trains, as witness the gaps in orders that keep happening.
How do you support design and production of the few high-speed trains that the UK needs?
Commuter EMUs might be a sustainable market, but nothing else.
That's why manufacturing is now global, with only a small level of UK content (most of it due to our infrastructure limitations and local standards).

Commercial airliners are largely produced by only 2 companies, Airbus and Boeing.
They both have UK content (wings, engines, and other hi-tech components), but there is no final assembly here.
Train manufacturing is moving in the same direction - producing specialised components for global products.
 

TRAX

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The persistent problem is that the UK cannot support total manufacturing for its trains, as witness the gaps in orders that keep happening.
How do you support design and production of the few high-speed trains that the UK needs?
Commuter EMUs might be a sustainable market, but nothing else.
That's why manufacturing is now global, with only a small level of UK content (most of it due to our infrastructure limitations and local standards).

Commercial airliners are largely produced by only 2 companies, Airbus and Boeing.
They both have UK content (wings, engines, and other hi-tech components), but there is no final assembly here.
Train manufacturing is moving in the same direction - producing specialised components for global products.
This is not new. Train parts come from all over the world, as 80 % of the value of a train is from sub-suppliers.
Train manufacturers don’t exist anymore, they are train assemblers.
 

LOL The Irony

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This is not new. Train parts come from all over the world, as 80 % of the value of a train is from sub-suppliers.
Train manufacturers don’t exist anymore, they are train assemblers.
Well that can go down to them introducing the just in time method of building trains they took from the auto industry. The 1995 Audi 80 sitting in my back yard has speakers made by Nokia and the airbag computer is made by Bosch.
 

Domh245

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Well that can go down to them introducing the just in time method of building trains they took from the auto industry. The 1995 Audi 80 sitting in my back yard has speakers made by Nokia and the airbag computer is made by Bosch.
'JIT' and 'farming out expertise' are completely unrelated
 

43096

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Grands Fromages? Nay, the expression you are looking for is grandes huiles (literally big oils, I know, it sounds absurd).

In France, ONIX was introduced in 1992 on the last batch of TFS tramways built for Grenoble and Paris.

The thread you are referencing is probably the following:

It reads like a more nuanced history than “the French pillaged English electric heritage”, does it not?
More nuanced, but the end result was the same. The phrase that keeps coming up is “production was moved to” with a location in France appended.
 

Domh245

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From what I see, just in time leads to farming out expertise.
Not really. The main objective of Just in time is to minimise stock (and WIP), by only planning to build what is needed (/can be sold) and buying/producing parts as necessary. Who builds the parts is irrelevant, if you had a car manufacturer that built every single component on a car, they would still employ JIT and only call engines, seats, etc, to the final assembly line as required (with each line building engines, seats, etc building to replenish the stock as necessary)

Acknowledging that Bosch/Valeo/Mann&Hummel can develop and build electronic systems/starter motors/filters better and cheaper than you could is unrelated to the manner in which they are supplied to the assembly line. Bombardier could design and build their own lights, door buttons, pantographs, brake systems, etc, but buying in those pieces from companies that are dedicated to those systems such as BMAC, EAO, Brecknell Wills, Knorr Bremse, etc will work out cheaper, quicker, and generally better.
 

TRAX

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Not really. The main objective of Just in time is to minimise stock (and WIP), by only planning to build what is needed (/can be sold) and buying/producing parts as necessary. Who builds the parts is irrelevant, if you had a car manufacturer that built every single component on a car, they would still employ JIT and only call engines, seats, etc, to the final assembly line as required (with each line building engines, seats, etc building to replenish the stock as necessary)

Acknowledging that Bosch/Valeo/Mann&Hummel can develop and build electronic systems/starter motors/filters better and cheaper than you could is unrelated to the manner in which they are supplied to the assembly line. Bombardier could design and build their own lights, door buttons, pantographs, brake systems, etc, but buying in those pieces from companies that are dedicated to those systems such as BMAC, EAO, Brecknell Wills, Knorr Bremse, etc will work out cheaper, quicker, and generally better.
Nothing to add, perfection.
 

LOL The Irony

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Acknowledging that Bosch/Valeo/Mann&Hummel can develop and build electronic systems/starter motors/filters better and cheaper than you could is unrelated to the manner in which they are supplied to the assembly line. Bombardier could design and build their own lights, door buttons, pantographs, brake systems, etc, but buying in those pieces from companies that are dedicated to those systems such as BMAC, EAO, Brecknell Wills, Knorr Bremse, etc will work out cheaper, quicker, and generally better.
That's kind of my point. I don't see the problem with 80% of a train being made by someone else and just assembled by [insert train builder here], it has it's benefits, which you just listed off. JIT helped the spread of farming out is my point, and it's actually a much more efficient way of building something (if everything runs smoothly) than making everything an a big batch in house. I don't see the point in having a problem with bringing in other suppliers if it gets the job done quicker.
 

TRAX

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That's kind of my point. I don't see the problem with 80% of a train being made by someone else and just assembled by [insert train builder here], it has it's benefits, which you just listed off. JIT helped the spread of farming out is my point, and it's actually a much more efficient way of building something (if everything runs smoothly) than making everything an a big batch in house. I don't see the point in having a problem with bringing in other suppliers if it gets the job done quicker.
Do you mean that a final manufacturer can work JIT because it’s the sub-supplier of the doors that stocks their own doors and sends them to the manufacturer when ordered ?
 

tetudo boy

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First impressions: Wow, it's sad to see a company that delivered one of the most hi-tech trains in the late 90s to go... But I'm interested to see what Alstom do with the UK rail industry. New Coradia trains, maybe?
 

Energy

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First impressions: Wow, it's sad to see a company that delivered one of the most hi-tech trains in the late 90s to go..
Which train are you talking about? Bombardier were not big in the UK and only did the voyagers and they were in the early 2000s, back then it was Adtranz who owned Derby.
 

D365

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First impressions: Wow, it's sad to see a company that delivered one of the most hi-tech trains in the late 90s to go... But I'm interested to see what Alstom do with the UK rail industry. New Coradia trains, maybe?
I'm very confused by this comment. What "company" is going? Bombardier still exists and Bombardier Transportation isn't being wound down. Derby had nothing to do with the Voyagers, they were not an ABB/ADtranz design.

Why would Alstom scrap the Aventra line?
 

Energy

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Why would Alstom scrap the Aventra line?
It would be very strange to do so as it has been very popular. Alstom don't have to put it up for sale as it wasn't mentioned as one of the things they could do to get the EU to authorise the purchase and as they didn't put it in I doubt they have any plans to sell it.

Derby will probably be very similar to how it was (and is for a while) under Bombardier but Alstom's HS2 bid may be built there if they win.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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Derby will probably be very similar to how it was (and is for a while) under Bombardier but Alstom's HS2 bid may be built there if they win.
It gives Alstom options, at least.
The maintenance work in the UK will no doubt be brought under a single management, probably signalling too.
I think Alstom is more active on infrastructure in the UK than Bombardier, with a number of joint ventures working on upgrade projects.
Product lines are harder to rationalise, so it might be the next generation before changes happen.
EMU software must be a key area to look at, seeing the problems Bombardier has had with Aventras.
We are probably a couple of years from a decision on the HS2 rolling stock.
 

Energy

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Surely they couldn't make that in the shed there. The site would surely need to be massively expanded, which could be avoided if they have Derby.
HS2 will be 200m long trains (2 coupled together for 400m) so Derby will be able to build them as some of the 701s are 200m, the 345s are 205m and some of the 720s are 243m long.
 
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Sorry, I can't remember the exact words used, but tonight's BBC tv's East Midlands Today repeated the story reported in the Derby Telegraph that the joint bid originally established between Bombardier and Hitachi for HS2 trains had been preserved under the terms of the takeover.

Lots of Aventras shown during the piece, and the context surrounding the report would lead people to believe that the bid for HS2 trains continued to involve the Derby plant
 

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It’s both shocking and embarrassing that the UK is the only developed economy (certainly the only G7 member) incapable of independently manufacturing much of its own infrastructure like rail rolling stock. The Alstom takeover is yet another nail in the coffin for British industry. The wonders of the ‘free market’, eh?

As others have alluded to, I sense it is a matter of time before Litchurch Lane is wound-down. Granted, it has survived previous ‘rocky patches’ long before the Alstom bid, but now it puts the whole site on borrowed time. Surely there are no further orders beyond the current Aventra line...? It could well be Washwood Heath all over again!
Absoloutley right.

I think people misunderstand the importance of having nationally owned industry-it gives the country a sense of purpose. I am firmly in the belief that globally, nations compete with eachother, not individuals as per the classical liberal view. Without domestic owned industry, there dosen't seem to be a sense of achievement and acomplishment. Hence why it is not at all reassuring when others say "but the workers are British". France or Germany would never even dream of closing Alsthom or Siemens plants in their own countries and certainly wouldn't dream of selling or breaking up these companies. And I am sure they are both incredibly proud of their TGV/ICE trains-ditto for the Japanese's Shinkansen trains
 
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LNW-GW Joint

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I think I'd argue that one of the UK's problems was in not privatising the BR manufacturing capability earlier, and spending too much time focussed on the BR market.
Siemens, Alsthom, ABB and Hitachi all developed competitive global products while we were still only interested in the next BR requirement, which had little resonance overseas.
In general, foreign railways, even when nationalised, tended to order from private manufacturers rather than in house.
GEC and its constituents, with only the off-cuts from the BR internal orders, were too small to compete globally except in a few (mostly Commonwealth) markets.
GEC itself lost interest after a decade of JV with Alsthom, preferring to concentrate on telecoms and defence.
BREL was privatised too late and never got into an export-oriented mode.
It's not surprising the global majors ate our lunch.

Then you have the City's view that low-grade manufacturing is not worth investing in, which affects many sectors, not just rail.
Also not to forget that these mega-mergers reflect long-term problems with profitability of the underlying concerns.
All these "majors" have had severe problems keeping afloat recently, Bombardier just being the latest.

(There was a similar experience in commercial aircraft, where BAe's 20% stake in Airbus was sold to the other shareholders so that BAE Systems could concentrate on defence).
 
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