British Rail Class 397

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British Rail Class 397 Civity
Transpennine Express 397003 at Wigan North Western April 2019.jpg
397003 at Wigan North Western on mileage accumulation tests.
In service30 November 2019
Built atBeasain, Spain[1]
Family nameCivity
ReplacedClass 350/4
Number built12 units
Formation5 carriages per unit
Fleet numbers397001–397012
Capacity296 seats
(272 in standard, 24 in first class)[2]
Operator(s)TransPennine Express
Train length118 m (387 ft 2 in)[3]
Car lengthDMFLW & DMSL: 24.03 m (78 ft 10 in)
PTS, MSL & PTSL: 23.35 m (76 ft 7 in)[4]
DoorsSliding plug, at body ends
Maximum speed125 mph (201 km/h)[4]
Accelerationmax. 0.92 m/s/s (3.3 km/(h⋅s); 2.1 mph/s)[4]
Electric system(s)25 kV 50 Hz AC Overhead[4]
Current collection methodPantograph
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge

The Class 397 Civity[5] is a class of electric multiple unit which are being constructed for TransPennine Express by Spanish rolling stock manufacturer CAF.[6] A total of twelve five-car units are to be built, and they entered service in November 2019.[7][8]


The announcement of new trains was made by FirstGroup when it was confirmed that they would become the next operator of the TransPennine Express franchise from 1 April 2016.[9] In May 2016 it was announced by TransPennine Express that they had ordered twelve five-car electric multiple units from CAF to replace the fleet of ten four-car Class 350/4 Desiro units which presently operate TransPennine Express services between Liverpool, Manchester and Scotland.[10]

Testing of the first set began at the Velim railway test circuit in July 2018.[11]

TransPennine Express has branded its new fleet under the general name Nova, with the Class 397 units branded as Nova 2.[12]

An option for up to 22 extra units was available to TransPennine Express, but it was not exercised.[13]

Mainline testing of the Class 397 was carried out from Manchester International Depot, operating between the depot and Carlisle via Crewe, the test runs being operated by Rail Operations Group.[14]

Following successful reliability and mileage accumulation testing, the first unit was handed back to TransPennine and entered passenger service on 30 November 2019.[15]

Fleet details[edit]

Class Operator No. Built Year Built Cars per Set Unit nos.
Class 397 TransPennine Express 12 2017-2019 5 397001–397012
TPE Class 397 'Nova 2'

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Clinnick, Richard. "FIRST PICTURE: TransPennine Express Class 397 takes shape in Spain". RAIL magazine. RAIL magazine. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  2. ^ "CAF Civity EMU for TransPennine Express on test at Velim - International Railway Journal". Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d "Class 397". Eversholt Rail. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  5. ^ Haigh, Philip. "Is it time for the railway to standardise on fewer types of trains, to cut costs?". Rail Magazine. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
  6. ^ Clinnick, Richard (6 September 2018). "FIRST PICTURE: TransPennine Express Class 397 takes shape in Spain. They share a similar overall design eith the mark 5 and 5a coaching stock which are also part pf the "civity" family". Retrieved 8 November 2018.
  7. ^
  8. ^ "TransPennine Express Class 397 fleet taking shape". Global Rail News. Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  9. ^ "New TransPennine Express franchise launches". TransPennine Express. TransPennine Express. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
  10. ^ "More new trains for the North and Scotland". TransPennine Express. TransPennine Express. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
  11. ^ "CAF Civity EMU for TransPennine Express on test at Velim". International Railway Journal. 4 July 2016. Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  12. ^ TransPennine Express - Together February 2018
  13. ^ "TPE Franchise Agreement" (PDF). GOV.UK. GOV.UK. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  14. ^
  15. ^