GWR Tender for 30 x 4 car EMUs

tbtc

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Seems a sensible approach - given the way that all public procurement has to be above board/ scrutinised etc, we need to go through exercises like this even when it's "obvious" what the answer you want is (e.g. wasn't there an "open" tender to build additional coaches for the 390s when they were extended, even though there was only ever going to be one winner of a contract like that).

All of the wasteful PPE procurement over the past few years has surely shown that we are better to have contracts/ tenders done in full public view, rather than stitching up behind closed doors.

I'm no a fanboy of any particular manufacturer, so I'm not too bothered about one modern four coach EMU versus another - they're all fairly much of a muchness to me - maybe if you have a favourite seat then these things matter more - given how expensive everything is on the railway these days, someone drafting a fairly standard "invitation" template and then repainting thirty EMUs/ training staff is probably fairly insignificant compared to all of the other things that our ticket prices/taxes have to pay for - so even if it means shaving a tiny percentage off the costs of leasing dozens of units for a number of years then it's probably good value for money

I cannot see the logic in building to many trains to create competition. Whilst it might save the taxpayer some money in the short term it's still a crazy way to run a railway. It would be much better to agree a lease price for the duration of the trains life thus ensuring value for money. Or better yet why not just buy them using taxpayers money? Purchased by the people, used by the people, seems more sensible to me

Didn't BR order too many trains at times to create competition between the various manufacturers?

Or was that okay because it "stimulated competition" (and created various oddities and enthusiasts like a variety of tiny classes)?
 
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hooverboy

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Didn't BR order too many trains at times to create competition between the various manufacturers?

Or was that okay because it "stimulated competition" (and created various oddities and enthusiasts like a variety of tiny classes)?
Yes, in the BR days, they sourced small trial batches of loco's from various manufacturers within power bands,to see which would be the most reliable before putting in the big orders.

Putting in inital big orders from unknown sources carries immense risk,like the class 56 for instance.
Was outsourced to electroputere in Romania because BR doncaster were too heavily loaded with work, and were so shoddily built ,they all had to be retrofitted at,BR doncaster.

Even with big,well established manufacturers, they all have their own "quirks"..Lets take Alstom.Very highly respected and world-beating Electric traction, but can't build a DMU for toffee.

I should edit that,and say ,that with the acquisition of bombardier,that may change a bit.Bombardier do have a better reputation on the diesel side, however,software is not their strong point.
 
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ashkeba

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Even with big,well established manufacturers, they all have their own "quirks"..Lets take Alstom.Very highly respected and world-beating Electric traction, but can't build a DMU for toffee.

I should edit that,and say ,that with the acquisition of bombardier,that may change a bit.Bombardier do have a better reputation on the diesel side, however,software is not their strong point.
GWR's next DMU tender will probably result in Alstom doing the diesel bits and ex-Bombardier doing the software!
 

ashkeba

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Cause the last DMUs First bought from Alstom for the GWML were a huge success… :lol:
They went like hot cakes. Very very hot cakes. But that was mostly after they left the GWML.
 

paul1609

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How many units are required for the NDL? Could a case be made for all the 350/2's, with all/some of them fitted with batteries/shoegear to facilitate NDL running and having a single fleet of trains? If additional charging time was required could it be done with interworking diagrams? not the most outrageous idea, the core 30 could be transferred and the remaining 7 trialed/converted with some/the rest happening in time. The only limitation I can see of the 350 fleet is the lack of bodyside cameras, which I'm sure could be fitted.
I don't know if the NDL has ever been scoped but the issue with battery units charging off dc lines is that the electrified traffic on the lines has often expanded to the limit of the electrification infrastructure.
The Oxted line for instance doesn't have sufficient electrical capacity for the Uckfield trains to be switched to straight electric trains let alone trains rapidly charging batteries after a 50 mile round trip off the third rail.
Unfortunately battery units aren't the easy solution some people seem to think on the Southern dc system.
 

Deepgreen

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"The EMUs are expected to be operated anywhere on the electrified portion of the GWR network, primarily operating between London Paddington to Swindon, with the ability to cover services onto Cardiff"

It doesn't look like any services currently start at Swindon. Could this to be to allow Paddington to Reading services to be extended to Swindon?
As a partial aside, whoever you're quoting (GWR?) - they have adopted the latest language mangling fad in saying between 'x TO y', rather than 'x AND y'. When and why did this latest aberration start?
 

Wyrleybart

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I don't know if the NDL has ever been scoped but the issue with battery units charging off dc lines is that the electrified traffic on the lines has often expanded to the limit of the electrification infrastructure.
The Oxted line for instance doesn't have sufficient electrical capacity for the Uckfield trains to be switched to straight electric trains let alone trains rapidly charging batteries after a 50 mile round trip off the third rail.
Unfortunately battery units aren't the easy solution some people seem to think on the Southern dc system.
There is a rather subtle point here. Most people know that electric traction is more environmentally friendly, subject to affordability and safety. So it is desirable to close out the diesel islands on the southern and export the 171s north. If battery operation is as big a problem as is being suggested because the route between London and Hurst Green is currently capable of charging on board batteries as well as providing traction then augment the electrics. The 171s have to be gone so it is either electrics to Uckfield or batteries to Uckfield and much less shilly shallying. We can actually land on Mars these days so a little bit of electrification isn't really a problem
 

Doomotron

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As for the 379s, it could be interesting to see what happens. While the reasonably expectation is that the 387s stay, the 379s being taken instead would be an upgrade for passengers and would secure the class' future, with the 387 being a guaranteed sell for GTR.
They went like hot cakes. Very very hot cakes. But that was mostly after they left the GWML.
The trouble is they didn't really go like hot cakes at all... As Paul said, "you'll be going nowhere." :lol:
 

JonathanH

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While the reasonably expectation is that the 387s stay, the 379s being taken instead would be an upgrade for passengers and would secure the class' future, with the 387 being a guaranteed sell for GTR.
I think you have to take into account the likely [1] partial refit of the 379s to remove the first class seats and luggage racks and match the loading characteristics of the 387s if they were to go to GWR. With those changes, they might not really represent much of an upgrade on the 387s.

[1] 'likely' because the tender requires the units to have the same crush loading capacity as the current stock.
 

Nicholas Lewis

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A fellow contributor to UKModernEMU has noted that this requirement has been updated see

https://bidstats.uk/tenders/2022/W23/776405164

with the following amendment

The contract will be awarded by negotiated procedure without further publication of a call for competition and invited interested economic operators should express their interest.
Sounds like the existing lease will continue presumably with revised terms.
 

ashkeba

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I think that there is zero chance of the 2-1 seating remaining wherever they go.
Not even as an attempt to curry favour with GTR's most majestic passenger on her journeys to Sandringham, if they go there not GWR?
 

Magdalia

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Not even as an attempt to curry favour with GTR's most majestic passenger on her journeys to Sandringham, if they go there not GWR?
GTR's most majestic passenger is well used to 2+2 seating in both class 365s and class 387s.

HM needs an adjacent seat for her handbag that contains the emergency marmalade sandwich!
 

Class455

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A fellow contributor to UKModernEMU has noted that this requirement has been updated see

https://bidstats.uk/tenders/2022/W23/776405164

with the following amendment


Sounds like the existing lease will continue presumably with revised terms.
I still have a feeling that the GWR 387’s are heading for GTR. As I’ve mentioned before, it seems very strange that an operator has had to put out an ITT for stock it already has. Yes some may argue it’s to get Porterbrook to lower their costs of leasing, but couldn’t they do that in private negotiations? I could be wrong but the fact that GWR are putting out this tender in the first place and tendering for 30 EMU’s (which are exactly how many 379’s there are as opposed to 33 387’s at GWR) makes me think that GWR have lost their non HEX 387’s to GTR and they are tendering to eventually end up receiving the Class 379’s. Of course, I could be mistaken to believe this.

It also makes sense to swap the GWR 387’s with 379’s should they go to GTR because it would give GTR an all Porterbrook leased fleet once the Eversholt 171’s and Rock Rail (?) 313’s depart, plus with the void now being created by the 455’s leaving, 313’s impending departure at GTR and proposed electrification of the Uckfield and Marshlink line, the addition of 387’s along with 377/5’s from SE would be a no brainier for Southern’s future fleet strategy I feel.
 

swt_passenger

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A fellow contributor to UKModernEMU has noted that this requirement has been updated see

https://bidstats.uk/tenders/2022/W23/776405164

with the following amendment


Sounds like the existing lease will continue presumably with revised terms.
I don’t think that actually follows. They initially call for expressions of interest. Let’s suppose the handful of usual suspects then each declare their interest. The TOC then announces that it is negotiating with those interested parties and there won’t be a further call for tenders. I don’t believe it definitely means they’re only negotiating with one ROSCO.
 

43102EMR

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I still have a feeling that the GWR 387’s are heading for GTR. As I’ve mentioned before, it seems very strange that an operator has had to put out an ITT for stock it already has. Yes some may argue it’s to get Porterbrook to lower their costs of leasing, but couldn’t they do that in private negotiations? I could be wrong but the fact that GWR are putting out this tender in the first place and tendering for 30 EMU’s (which are exactly how many 379’s there are as opposed to 33 387’s at GWR) makes me think that GWR have lost their non HEX 387’s to GTR and they are tendering to eventually end up receiving the Class 379’s. Of course, I could be mistaken to believe this.

It also makes sense to swap the GWR 387’s with 379’s should they go to GTR because it would give GTR an all Porterbrook leased fleet once the Eversholt 171’s and Rock Rail (?) 313’s depart, plus with the void now being created by the 455’s leaving, 313’s impending departure at GTR and proposed electrification of the Uckfield and Marshlink line, the addition of 387’s along with 377/5’s from SE would be a no brainier for Southern’s future fleet strategy I feel.
We’ll wait and see, but I’m starting to think you might be right - isn’t unit availability mid-twenties a day for the GWR 387 fleet at present anyways? The 379s would easily cover it.

I do wonder though, if it were to happen, whether all would leave or just the bulk.
 

JonathanH

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Yes, but we have to keep coming back to whether the DfT wants to pay the leasing costs on 30 (or 33, or fewer) extra units for Southern that aren't necessarily needed. It shouldn't be outside the capability of the Southern planners to shuffle the 377s slightly to solve the Tulse Hill problem, particularly if six 387s return from the GN routes / the c2c units.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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All of the wasteful PPE procurement over the past few years has surely shown that we are better to have contracts/ tenders done in full public view, rather than stitching up behind closed doors.
Ironically, the 387s had a curious origin as a Southern (pre-GTR) procurement as an emergency replacement for Thameslink 319s heading north.
Repeat orders based on the Southern contract were then signed off for GWR and other operators, all apparently without going to competitive tender.
It seemed that DfT, having placed the big class 700 Thameslink order with Siemens, were keen to route other orders to Bombardier without too much scrutiny.
 

43102EMR

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Yes, but we have to keep coming back to whether the DfT wants to pay the leasing costs on 30 (or 33, or fewer) extra units for Southern that aren't necessarily needed. It shouldn't be outside the capability of the Southern planners to shuffle the 377s slightly to solve the Tulse Hill problem, particularly if six 387s return from the GN routes / the c2c units.
They’re only not needed due to the massive timetable cuts Southern made - in the long term, I can imagine as the timetables will return to normal, they would be a huge help.
 

JonathanH

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They’re only not needed due to the massive timetable cuts Southern made - in the long term, I can imagine as the timetables will return to normal, they would be a huge help.
Who says what 'normal' is? There is a new normal now which doesn't have all the pre-March 2020 routes at the pre-March 2020 frequencies because there aren't the pre-March 2020 customers or revenue.
 

DanNCL

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Ironically, the 387s had a curious origin as a Southern (pre-GTR) procurement as an emergency replacement for Thameslink 319s heading north.
Repeat orders based on the Southern contract were then signed off for GWR and other operators, all apparently without going to competitive tender.
It seemed that DfT, having placed the big class 700 Thameslink order with Siemens, were keen to route other orders to Bombardier without too much scrutiny.
20 387s were ordered speculatively by Porterbrook without any TOC or DFT involvement. Eventually 6 of those units became the 387/3s for C2C, and the remainder became part of GWR’s fleet.

Who says what 'normal' is? There is a new normal now which doesn't have all the pre-March 2020 routes at the pre-March 2020 frequencies because there aren't the pre-March 2020 customers or revenue.
You’ve only got to take one look at many of the services Southern have running on their reduced timetable to see that they need more units than they’ve got. Overcrowding has been a big problem ever since the 455s were withdrawn without replacement.
 

43102EMR

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Who says what 'normal' is? There is a new normal now which doesn't have all the pre-March 2020 routes at the pre-March 2020 frequencies because there aren't the pre-March 2020 customers or revenue.
As echoed by DanNCL, the reduced timetable has been a huge problem with Southern - passenger levels (excluding this week) are at 92% of pre-COVID levels and rising, and the cuts aren’t necessarily helping in combating this.
 

Class455

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20 387s were ordered speculatively by Porterbrook without any TOC or DFT involvement. Eventually 6 of those units became the 387/3s for C2C, and the remainder became part of GWR’s fleet.


You’ve only got to take one look at many of the services Southern have running on their reduced timetable to see that they need more units than they’ve got. Overcrowding has been a big problem ever since the 455s were withdrawn without replacement.
Exactly, and those cuts will not be sustainable in the long term. Being a resident Southern user I’ve certainly noticed more commuters using the network so there is certainly a business case for extra stock. I personally think getting rid of the 455’s without replacement was very premature with passenger numbers rising but our wonderful Department for Transport who are completely out of touch with the travelling public in my view decided they’d save money. On the subject of saving money another benefit of GTR gaining the GWR 387’s and having an all Porterbrook fleet of electrostars would be further cost savings potentially rather than having a fleet of Akiem owned 379’s on the GN, so there’s definitely a method behind the madness there.

If GWR’s 387’s don’t have first class either, if they do end up at GTR they’d be ideal for Southern Metro services as they can work alongside the 5 car 377’s, though their higher top speed would make them more suited to express work which could displace older 377’s to Metro work.
 

AzureOtsu

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In my opinion the most logical way this can go down is the 379s going to GWR, the GWR 387s going to GN, getting refurbished into GN livery and the GN 387s all coming south of the river. GN 387s were probably always destined to end up with southern otherwise why would they have been built with southern doors & interior and not be removed or changed after so long. all it would take would be revinyling and minor refurb and they are ready to work on the metro routes.
 

Class455

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In my opinion the most logical way this can go down is the 379s going to GWR, the GWR 387s going to GN, getting refurbished into GN livery and the GN 387s all coming south of the river. GN 387s were probably always destined to end up with southern otherwise why would they have been built with southern doors & interior and not be removed or changed after so long. all it would take would be revinyling and minor refurb and they are ready to work on the metro routes.
That’s exactly what I had in mind and would make the most sense IMO.
 

fgwrich

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In my opinion the most logical way this can go down is the 379s going to GWR, the GWR 387s going to GN, getting refurbished into GN livery and the GN 387s all coming south of the river. GN 387s were probably always destined to end up with southern otherwise why would they have been built with southern doors & interior and not be removed or changed after so long. all it would take would be revinyling and minor refurb and they are ready to work on the metro routes.
To be fair, regarding the interior, Bombardier just seemed to have an endless amount of Southern Moquette and carpet left over, as the C2C 387s and little bits of the GWR units show (certainly the cabs are virtually the same!). I can only presume they came with Southern green doors after running off the same production line as the late build 377s.
 

Nicholas Lewis

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I still have a feeling that the GWR 387’s are heading for GTR. As I’ve mentioned before, it seems very strange that an operator has had to put out an ITT for stock it already has. Yes some may argue it’s to get Porterbrook to lower their costs of leasing, but couldn’t they do that in private negotiations? I could be wrong but the fact that GWR are putting out this tender in the first place and tendering for 30 EMU’s (which are exactly how many 379’s there are as opposed to 33 387’s at GWR) makes me think that GWR have lost their non HEX 387’s to GTR and they are tendering to eventually end up receiving the Class 379’s. Of course, I could be mistaken to believe this.

It also makes sense to swap the GWR 387’s with 379’s should they go to GTR because it would give GTR an all Porterbrook leased fleet once the Eversholt 171’s and Rock Rail (?) 313’s depart, plus with the void now being created by the 455’s leaving, 313’s impending departure at GTR and proposed electrification of the Uckfield and Marshlink line, the addition of 387’s along with 377/5’s from SE would be a no brainier for Southern’s future fleet strategy I feel.
They currently aren't 110mph though as to whether its straightforward to certify them for the higher speed i have no ides but even the 350's needed work doing to them. So why would DfT want to spend money on that. The logic move, if more stock is need for SN and thats a big if with a few trains being uncomfortable isn't going to encourage the DfT to spend a shed load of money, is to exchange them for the GN 387's.
 

DanNCL

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They currently aren't 110mph though as to whether its straightforward to certify them for the higher speed i have no ides but even the 350's needed work doing to them. So why would DfT want to spend money on that. The logic move, if more stock is need for SN and thats a big if with a few trains being uncomfortable isn't going to encourage the DfT to spend a shed load of money, is to exchange them for the GN 387's.
It's entirely possible that Akiem could be told to retrofit the 379s for 110mph at their own expense if they want the 379s to find any further use.
 

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