My understanding of the problems around the NGR sets relate not only to defects but also the need to modify them to operate with a guard as well as a driver.
This is why most of the contracts are a build and maintain and are required to provide an availability factor, not the govt simply stating I wan 20 trains, rather I want 20 trains in service, you work out how many you need to ensure that level of availability. Of course for the media release Mr and Mrs public just get the total number. Note this style of contract has been used for I think the local made NSW 90 class fleet so its pretty standard regardless of where they are made. I'd bet the WA C set contracts are the same. I think you will find most of the cost of fixing the NGR sets are at the suppliers feet, but of course I could be wrong.
This is great news all round. At least this current premier believes in the ability of local manufacturers to build trains and doesn't dismiss or criticize them like a certain other premier did recently.....
Possibly a case of once bitten twice shy.
No point in 'saving' money on cheap imported rolling stock when $$ has to be spent making them fit for purpose as Gladys may well discover in NSW with her new regional train order.
The sets were ordered by the LNP government as driver only and then the Labor government decided later to reinstate the guards job after the contract had been signed and construction started in India.
Rather than cause a delivery delay while the redesign was approved and the price renegotiated it was decided to just accept them as ordered and modify them in Queensland (look local jobs).
The guards have saved there jobs by the need for disabled access assistance and most of the work is justified by this excuse.
Regardless these changes would most certainly be payed for by the Queensland government and not the contractor.
This is a bit different to Mike's concern as its a change by govt policy after the order, but otherwise agree with what you are saying.
Wasn't the issue with the guards compartment was that historically QR have only operated 3 or 3+3 car sets so that the guard was always central on the platform so easy to support people with special needs, the fixed 6 car NGR sets had the guard at the end of the train, making it difficult to assist people needing support without taking lead from Mel and saying if you want help be at Car 1, Door 1. Which is confusing if one line does one thing and the rest of the network is different again.
Qld need to look towards DOO, however on the Gold Coast to Airport line is close to being suited to DOO, however if I recall there are still some low height platforms and until these are resolved moving to DOO will be difficult and Newman was just trying to prove a point at the time. However lets not throw too much cr-ap at him as if I recall correctly when the govt asked for staff cuts at QR, he did say or at least the Transport Minister said that DOO was not an option to be investigated.
Long-term I'd like the guards roles be changed to CSO's, the days of the guard needing to clear the train for departure are in their twilight years. Camera's and door sensors enables the drivers to do it elsewhere successfully, why not Qld. The guards should be roving the passenger cabin, not hiding in their cabins, helping passengers with needs, random ticket checking and managing disorderly conduct.