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ÖBB introduce the first upgraded NightJet

ÖBB introduce the first upgraded NightJet
photo: ÖBB/ÖBB
18 / 10 / 2021

The Austrian Railways (ÖBB) introduced the first fully upgraded NightJet couchette car. A new multifunctional car was created by transforming the classic 2nd class BZM series. The modernization program will transform a total of 22 wagons with the intention to increase comfort and strengthen the operation of night lines under the NightJet brand.

“Traveling by night train is becoming more and more popular across Europe. It is not only important to add new destinations to our Europe-wide night train network, but also to offer modern and comfortable night trains. With the NightJet upgrade program, we have converted conventional seated carriages into modern multifunctional couchette cars in around four months,” said Andreas Matthä, the CEO of ÖBB.

Modifications are done by ÖBB Technische Services. Newly upgraded comfort couchette cars will first appear on the route from Vienna to Bregenz. But the company wants to make them available on as many routes as possible in the near future.

Leonore Gewessler the Minister of Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, presented the new program:

“The future of short and medium-haul connections in Europe is the night train. Getting on the train in Vienna in the evening and waking up in the morning in the middle of a European capital is good for the climate and a comfortable way to travel". 

The multifunctional couchette coaches offer various innovations intended to maximize traveling comfort. Modifications rely on the new generation of interiors for night sets manufactured by Siemens.

Each compartment is equipped with a sunbed for four people. The cars also include space for transporting a stroller and up to three bicycles. One coupe in the carriage is designed for passengers with reduced mobility. The modern barrier-free compartment has 2 beds.

New modernized coaches include Wi-Fi and electrical outlets (sockets and USB charging options).  Various comfort functions such as lighting or service calls can be controlled via a display placed in each room. To secure passenger safety cars will be equipped with a camera surveillance system and NFC access system for the rooms.

The program falls under the ÖBB future strategy 2026, where Austrian railways invested EUR 25 billion. The strategy includes expansion of the railway infrastructure and renewable energy. EUR 3.4 billion is intended for modernization and expansion of the train fleet including the NightJet network.

ÖBB NightJets are on selected routes operated with the cooperation of railway partners in Switzerland (SBB), Italy (Trenitalia), France (SNCF), and Netherlands (NS).