Diesel Trains Ltd

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Diesel Trains Ltd was a company set up by the Department for Transport (DfT) in 2009 with the intention of funding and managing the procurement of up to 200 diesel multiple unit vehicles as part of the British Government's planned purchase of as many as 1300 new rail vehicles. In the end the order for the DMUs was cancelled and the company was wound up in 2012.


The company was incorporated in February 2009 following the announcement of the first 200 vehicles in late 2008 as part of the Pre-Budget Report - the speed of this announcement (the final contract to be signed in April 2009) led the government to take the lead in financing the procurement, through a public company. However, the DfT stated that it did not intend to serve in the long-term as a lessor of rolling stock. As a consequence, the DfT planned to sell Diesel Trains Ltd once the procurement process was completed, either as a whole, or by selling its assets and contracts.[1]

Diesel Trains Ltd was to have responsibility for the purchase and distribution of 202 DMU vehicles to three TOCs - First Great Western, First TransPennine Express and Northern Rail. The order itself was to encompass a total of 61 trains, with 19 four-car and 42 three-car.[2]

Following the announcement in August 2009 that the Great Western Main Line was to be electrified, the order for 202 DMUs was cancelled. After lying dormant for three years, Diesel Trains Ltd was dissolved in July 2012.[3]


  1. DfT - Purchase of 202 Diesel Multiple Unit Vehicles Archived 7 March 2009 at the UK Government Web Archive - 5 March 2009
  2. Haigh, Philip (March 2009). "Bombardier up against Chinese and Spanish in DMU bid". Rail (613): 11.
  3. Companies House - Diesel Trains Limited

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