In March 2015, Swiss freight operator BLS Cargo decided to order fifteen Vectron MS electrics from Siemens. They will be used for long haul freight services connecting the Netherlands and Italy through the Alps. The country specific packages of the machines will include all equipment required for running in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy.
The new locomotives are needed because BLS Cargo is facing the withdrawal of older series, and because it wants to strengthen its position on the long haul European corridor mentioned. At this moment, BLS Cargo already operates container shuttles connecting Rotterdam (NL) with Melzo (IT) using Bombardier Traxx MS locomotives in cooperation with ERS Railways / Freightliner.
In the past months, BLS Cargo has evaluated several modern electrics on their network. They have decided to go with Siemens. The new machines will be delivered in three separate batches. The first locomotives will be delivered in the second half of 2016. The delivery will be completed in 2018.