Posted: 22 September 2009

Taken:2009-09-22 19:19:45
Camera:Canon EOS 1000D
Exposure: -1/3
Exposure Time:1/200
Focal Length:27 mm


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Germany license.


Cisalpino is a swiss-italian railroad company, owned jointly by swiss SBB and italian Trenitalia (FS), which operates high-speed tilting Pendolino trains between Switzerland and Italy (service to Germany was cancelled in 2006). The name translates roughly to “Beyond (i.e. south of) the Alps”. The ETR 470, here seen in Zürich, a dual-voltage of the italian ETR 460, is the current main EMU used there, together with locomotive-hauled trains.

The train is designed by Giugiaro, one of the great italian car and industrial designers. What exactly he did there I don’t know, as the train looks rather bland, but it’s not ugly either. In terms of technology, though, it turned out to be a nightmare, to the degree that SBB has a refund office specifically for Cisalpino. This is also the reason why the runs to Stuttgart were replaced by german ICE T trains (also tilting) north of Zürich. It’s dedicated replacement, the ETR 610, isn’t doing any better so far, being (among other things) too heavy for high-speed tilting service. Additionally, the maintenance for the trains (done in Italy, although some is done in Basel now) has had severe quality problems as well. This meant that quite recently, the swiss federal government was close to revoking Cisalpino’s operating license. So far, this has been averted, though.


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