It appears that many people believe that V/Line's equipment requires an upgrade on the line to Albury.
What would the drawbacks be of V/Line taking advantage of the fact that the line is SG and buying something off the shelf - for example the Hunter railcar?
I can appreciate the fact that these units aren't kitted out with all the customer convenience facilities that the current equipment but really, this is state subsidised public transport - it doesn't need to be fancy. Put in a vending machine and I am sure 90% of travellers would be satisfied.
Have I missed something that makes this impossible?
Off the shelf does not necessarily mean "cheaper", particularly if such rollingstock is not actually required to cater for demand presently. Furthermore, the Hunter cars are not "off the shelf" anymore, the production run has ended, and while they could certainly be manufactured again in a relatively short timeframe, so could Bombadier's existing V/locity line.
Having travelled in a Hunter set many times, there is no way I would travel in one for an extended distance. Kitted out as they are, they are designed as commuter trains, not intercity or even interurban trains. 3x2 seating vs 2x2 in the Vlocity's for example, the only concession to long-distance travel is having a dunny on board.
However, one thing in their favour is their commonality with the V/locity, same engine, same drivetrain, giving maintenance commonality with the existing fleet, but by the same token and given the above, it would make more sense to simply buy more V/locity's. Marry them up as four-car sets (DM-T-T-DM) or similar and use them. I would suggest having a pair of trailers in the middle would be cheaper overall than 2x2 Hunter's or V/Locity's.
But is it really needed now, that's the fundamental question...?