New Athens Metro Model

A South Korean consortium of Hyundai Rotem and Hanwha said Wednesday it has won a 270-billion-won contract to supply railcars for the metro lines in Athens, Greece.

The latest order is the second of its kind with the European city after Hyundai Rotem, the country’s largest producer of trains and related equipment, successfully delivered 126 railcars to the Athens metro company in 2002 for the Athens 2004 Olympics Games.

Hyundai Rotem will design and manufacture 102 vehicles for the Athens metro system, which will be delivered by 2011 by Hanwha, the consortium said in a statement after Hyundai Rotem Vice Chairman and CEO Lee Yeo-sung and Hanwha President Yang Tae-jin participated in the contract signing ceremony held in Athens.

The city, with a population of 4 million people, currently operates three subway lines, of which the Korean consortium will help upgrade lines two and three.

“The city is preparing to build the fourth line, so the need for other railway vehicles such as locomotives and diesel multiple units are expected to increase,” said a Hyundai Rotem official, who added that the company’s work so far with Greece has helped prove its quality of cars.

The urban train car maker said it received the highest score for the design of the vehicle, which symbolizes a strong and solid helmet of a Greek warrior (!!!!). It also received the top scores in other technical evaluation areas, such as energy efficiency, reliability and maintainability, beating other European competitors.

Hyundai Rotem said it will aim to make the rail cars lighter for the newest order by applying aluminum alloy on the exterior and the Nomax Honey Comb, a light interior material structured like beehive.

It added that energy efficiency will be improved by adapting the Regenerative Brake System, which reuses the energy that is generated during braking.

“We are currently bidding for projects in Amsterdam and Copenhagen, so we hope to continue our success in the Western European market,” said the company official.

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