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Alpha Trains / RBSAF E186: 101-110 Transalp configuration  

E 186 101 on trials in Switzerland with the godfather of Bombardier electrics: demonstrator 128 001.

E 186 101-110 were built for ATC in 2006-2007, configurated for Transalp-services; equipped with all necessary safety and signalling systems making it possible to make (theoretically) a non-stop trip from the harbour of Rotterdam, over the Dutch BetuweRoute, through Germany, across the Alps into Italy. This so called north-south corridor is one of the most important routes for freight transport by rail in Europe. The specific systems on board were ETCS (the new European train control standard and required for the BetuweRoute), ATB (Netherlands), Indusi (Germany and Austria), Integra (Switzerland), and SCMT (Italy).

E 186 101 and 102 were built in 2006 to start homologation trials with. The remaining eight machines had their maiden run at the end of 2007 and were then stored. In April and May 2008, E 186 108 visited the Netherlands twice, and made trial runs over the Hoekse Lijn. In May 2008 E 186 109 was used in Austria for ETCS trials. Around the same time E 186 101 was in Italy for completing trials with the new Italian signalling system SCMT. Finally, all 10 machines ended up in and around Bellinzona (CH) in 2009, none of them ever used for a single revenue service as far as we know...

Then, in May 2009, the history of this batch took a strange turn. Appearantly ATC, Bombardier and the new leasing Railpool company had closed a deal in the mean time. That month, E 186 103 got a full repaint in Railpool colours and was presented as such on the Transport&Logistik Messe in Munich. Railpool is since then the owner of this batch, of which all units were repainted and delivered during the summer of 2009.