[Germany] May/June 2021 - 30 Years of ICE Service

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XAM2175

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I'm a little bit late on this, I admit, but nevertheless: 29 May this year marked thirty years since the public launch of the new Intercity-Express trainsets at Kassel-Wilhelmshöhe station, followed by the commencement of public services between Hamburg and Munich on the 2nd of June.

At that point the German high-speed rail network served 13 stations along the Hamburg - Munich route with 19 ICE 1 trainsets. Now, 330 sets serve 250 stations on 30 routes in Germany and also reaching into the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Switzerland, and Austria. Approximately 2700 kilometres of track now support speeds over 200 km/h (124 mi/h), and of that over 1000 km support speeds of 250 km/h (155 mi/h) and above.

As part of the development process the experimental ICE-V trainset set a new world speed record for wheeled rail vehicles, reaching 406.9 km/h (252.8 mi/h) on 1 May 1988.

DB have put together a nice little microsite in support of the occasion:
 
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duesselmartin

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and it could be that the ICE1 series (401) might outlive the second generation.
The much later ICE-TD diesels are already on the scrap heap.

My toughts on ICE. A very patchy network with only short sections of real high speed. DB also tries not to go 300 if the timetable allows it.
Just had a Dortmund to Munich ICE that did not go beyond 250kph.
On that journey, only the Siegburg to Frankfurt Airport and Nuremberg to Ingolstadt was real high speed, the rest conventional lines.

Martin
 

YorkshireBear

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and it could be that the ICE1 series (401) might outlive the second generation.
The much later ICE-TD diesels are already on the scrap heap.

My toughts on ICE. A very patchy network with only short sections of real high speed. DB also tries not to go 300 if the timetable allows it.
Just had a Dortmund to Munich ICE that did not go beyond 250kph.
On that journey, only the Siegburg to Frankfurt Airport and Nuremberg to Ingolstadt was real high speed, the rest conventional lines.

Martin
Indeed but I must say having used them, even the ICE4 I found to be incredibly comfortable compared to many UK intercity trains. Maybe the novelty and the Kölsch skewed my judgement!

Some areas seem well served by ICE others less so but I imagine much will be addressed by the Taktfahrplan? Or is that more tying in connections together.
 

jamesontheroad

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Alles Gute zum Geburtstag ICE!

A very German solution to a very German problem. I don't particularly enjoy travelling on ICE. The on board ambience is a bit drab and the seats have always been too firm for my taste (especially when you arrive in Hamburg from Copenhagen in a squishy DSB IC3 armchair...) But the technology and the achievements of the entire class are impressive.

I like the microsite DB have created, but I note that they have selectively omitted the less successful bits of history, including the ICE TD (class 605) and even the brief excursion of a test train to St Pancras a few years ago.
 

STEVIEBOY1

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I do like the German ICE Trains, I find them quite spacious and comfy even in 2nd class.
 

Davester50

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The difference between the pastel colour interior and the polished wood and glass version is amazing. I take it the pastel colour trains are no more? Been a while since I was on one.

Comfortable trains to travel on though. Such a shame we can't have the ICE domestically.
 

43096

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The difference between the pastel colour interior and the polished wood and glass version is amazing. I take it the pastel colour trains are no more? Been a while since I was on one.
The original interiors disappeared at the first refurbishment of the ICE1 sets several years ago.
Comfortable trains to travel on though. Such a shame we can't have the ICE domestically.
If the 80x fleet had an ICE-like interior (seats, glass, chrome finishes) then we might actually have a new InterCity train worthy of the name.
 

Davester50

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The original interiors disappeared at the first refurbishment of the ICE1 sets several years ago.
Ahh, thanks. Good reason why then!

If the 80x fleet had an ICE-like interior (seats, glass, chrome finishes) then we might actually have a new InterCity train worthy of the name.
Would have been interesting to see.
 

XAM2175

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A very patchy network with only short sections of real high speed. DB also tries not to go 300 if the timetable allows it.
Just had a Dortmund to Munich ICE that did not go beyond 250kph.
I've never really viewed that as a failing - more that DB were trying to develop a comprehensive network of faster trains in the same way that SBB have, rather than the French approach of bulldozing a few very-high-speed lines between major cities and leaving everything else behind. I grant though that I speak as semi-frequent tourist rather than somebody travelling regularly for work or education or family visits, etc etc.

If the 80x fleet had an ICE-like interior (seats, glass, chrome finishes) then we might actually have a new InterCity train worthy of the name.
Oh, that'd be the dream. The ICE interiors aren't perfect, of course, but I feel that there's definitely been effort put into making them at least a bit special. I've a very special fondness in particular for the Bordrestaurant in ICE 1 sets, with the clerestory windows.

Most of the advance publicity graphics and videos for HS2 show what look very much like ICE trains. Dare we live in hope?
The HS2 renders show Chinese CRH3C units, which are derivatives of the Velaro E delivered to RENFE, which are themselves derivatives of the ICE 3 sets - but I suspect it has a lot more to do with the availability of 3D models than anything else.
 

JonasB

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I've never really viewed that as a failing - more that DB were trying to develop a comprehensive network of faster trains in the same way that SBB have, rather than the French approach of bulldozing a few very-high-speed lines between major cities and leaving everything else behind. I grant though that I speak as semi-frequent tourist rather than somebody travelling regularly for work or education or family visits, etc etc.
I agree, but I also speak only as a semi-frequent tourist. A good solution for a country as polycentric as Germany. There are still many high speed lines that should be built in my opinion, but the trains are good!
 

Gag Halfrunt

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The HS2 renders show Chinese CRH3C units, which are derivatives of the Velaro E delivered to RENFE, which are themselves derivatives of the ICE 3 sets - but I suspect it has a lot more to do with the availability of 3D models than anything else.

Definitely down to using readily available 3D models, because the CRH3C is widened to fit the Chinese loading gauge.

 

gordonthemoron

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My preferences are ICE-1, ICE-4, ICE-3, ICE-2 and last ICE-T which I find a bit tatty. I didn't like the ICE-TD as it was too small, only 4 coaches.

The fastest I have been on one was on a late running ICE-3 between Frankfurt Flughafen and Siegburg/Bonn, which hit 320 km/h. I think the ICE-3s which work in France regularly hit 320 km/h.

They would be even better with the ambience of the Metronom First & Business class, although the Bord Restaurant in an ICE-1 takes some beating

and I first saw the ICE-1, or perhaps it was ICE-2 sets in Stuttgart Hbf in 1991
 
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