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The first modernised double-decker coaches go into service between Frankfurt and Limburg

Travel between Frankfurt and Limburg is set to become more comfortable and convenient as DB Fahrzeuginstandhaltung upgrades 54 double-decker coaches for DB Regio at its Wittenberge maintenance depot. The first three vehicles returned to service last week and the rest are expected to be ready by the end of 2021.

"I have received consistently positive feedback about the modernised vehicles from many quarters, including passengers who took part in the inaugural journey," said Herrmann Kämling, vehicle project manager at the Wittenberge maintenance depot. The considerably greater space between seats, new monitors and displays and the design concept for the overall system have attracted particular attention. "Staff at the Wittenberge maintenance depot can be very proud of the redesigned vehicles," said Kämling.

The redesign is part of the new contract awarded by the Rhein-Main Verkehrsbund (RMV) to operate services on lines RE20 and RB22 that will come into force in December 2021. After final inspection and acceptance by the local transport authority, the first three redesigned double-decker vehicles entered regular scheduled services on 17 February 2020.

Highlights of the modernised coaches

The air-conditioned, redesigned double-decker coaches now have new seats with more space between the seats. All two-seat configurations are equipped with laptop sockets. The modernised vehicles feature free passenger Wi-Fi, a state-of-the-art traveller information system with energy-saving LCD screens and video surveillance in the passenger area.

The multi-purpose compartments for prams, wheelchairs and bicycles in the driving trailer feel spacious, thanks to the new arrangement of fixed and fold-down seats and the installation of a bar for bicycles. All the interior walls and toilets have been refurbished or replaced. The floors have also been replaced and the vehicles repainted. First class seats are made of leather and can be adjusted. First class also features larger tables with cup indents, seats with fold-away tables, footrests and newspaper nets.

Ten class 146.1 locomotives will also be upgraded at the Dessau maintenance depot as part of the vehicle redesign project.