The real question is: what nickname are the new HCMT EMUs going to get? 'Evos'? (in reference to the Evolution Rail consortium)
I'm surprised Downer EDI got the job - wasn't the last thing they did for Melbourne a Comeng refurb, over 10 years ago?
Has anyone heard why they might have won the tender over Bombardier or the others?
Downer Rail at Newport has been doing a lot of maintenance contracts lately. They're in the middle of a big facility refurbishment project at the moment, which they're going to be capitalising on for the HCMT contract.
The reason they will have won is price, plus a whole lot of political button-pushing. I quote
Respondents were required to demonstrate how they will boost local employment, training and investment through the delivery of new trains for Melbourne.
Melbourne's western suburbs are being hit by the loss of Toyota's Altona assembly plant and the closure of BAE Systems' shipyard in Williamstown. Marketing 'Cheap Trains, Some Assembly Required' is easier when you're going to save jobs at the same time.
Oh, and CRRC is going to set up a regional HQ in Melbourne as part of the deal too.
As for other bidders, Alstom got the consolation prize this time by being given the funds to vomit forth 9 more X'Traps from their Ballarat North 'shops, taking them through to 2019 when the next major Victorian train contract is awarded (an interurban commuter diesel train for V/Line).
Bombardier Dandenong's likely going to be building more E class trams in the foreseeable future via an additional order extension on top of the 50 + 20 they're doing at the moment. It's pretty much inevitable given how much of the existing tram fleet is utterly noncompliant with Disability Discrimination Act requirements.
The hunter railcar could be what they are basing it off or maybe the perth b series. I wonder why the Chinese are interested if 60% of the manufacturing is supposed to be happening in Australia.
I'm not sure what the design will be building upon exactly, but it won't be the TransPerth B series (a Bombardier product) or the Hunter Railcar DMU. The design itself would most likely be based on something that a subsidiary of CRRC has built before.
The Chinese are interested because they want to do business everywhere
. Winning a contract in a country like Australia also comes with a bit of prestige, too.