Alpha Trains lease eight Stadler FLIRT3 XL to VIAS Rail GmbH for Rheingau Express

Alpha Trains have leased eight brand-new Stadler FLIRT3 XL trains to VIAS Rail GmbH on a long-term basis, with an option for one additional train.

The Stadler FLIRT3 XL

The Stadler FLIRT3 XL - Credit: @Stadler

VIAS Rail GmbH (VIAS), a subsidiary of the RATH Group, has leased eight brand-new Stadler FLIRT3 XL trains from Alpha Trains on a long-term basis. In addition, there is an option for one additional train. The four-car multiple-units complement the existing VIAS fleet and, from December 2025, will be operated on the new RegionalExpress connection RE19 on the right bank of the Rhine between Koblenz and Frankfurt.

Rhein-Main-Verkehrsverbund (RMV) and Zweckverband Schienenpersonennahverkehr Rheinland-Pfalz Nord (SPNV-Nord) have awarded the operation of the RB10 “Rheingau Line” and the future RegionalExpress line RE19 to VIAS. VIAS has been operating the RB10 since 2010 and was also able to secure the operation of the new RB19 after successfully winning the RB10 connection contract. The new Rheingau Express (RE19) complements the existing RB10 line and replaces the RE9, which previously only ran between Eltville and Frankfurt and only during rush hours.

Reactions to the leasing

“With the modern railcars of the FLIRT3 XL series, we provide our passengers with an attractive and comfortable travel option on the Rheingau Express,” Franz Reh, Managing Director of VIAS Rail GmbH, said. “The vehicles are an excellent addition to our existing fleet. We are pleased to be able to continue our long-standing cooperation with Stadler Deutschland. We are also delighted to have gained a new competent partner in Alpha Trains.”

“We are looking forward to the long-term partnership with our new customer, VIAS Rail GmbH (VIAS),” Thomas Schmidt, Managing Director of Alpha Trains Europa GmbH, said. “The cooperation up to the signing of the contract was extremely professional and committed and showed that our companies are on the same wavelength. These are the best preconditions for being able to implement this challenging project together – there was only one month between the legally binding award of the transport contract and the signing of the leasing contract – on schedule and successfully.”

“We are proud to once again deliver trains from the proven FLIRT series to VIAS with this order for the Rheingau Express,” Jure Mikolčić, CEO of Stadler Division Germany, said. “Equipping the railcars with the state-of-the-art Guardia train protection system helps to significantly improve cycle times and connections.”

The modern, electric multiple-unit trains of the type Stadler FLIRT3 XL have four-units and offer passengers 230 comfortable seats with their extra-long car bodies as well as a total capacity for up to 512 passengers. The spacious multi-purpose areas allow the transport of up to 12 bicycles, four prams and two wheelchairs per train. Six doors on each side of the vehicle allow passengers to change quickly. With an optimised boarding area, the service carriage offers barrier-free boarding regardless of the respective platform height and is equipped with lifting devices.