On 10 September, passenger traffic on the Moscow Central Ring railway (MCR) was launched. Russian president Vladimir Putin took part in the ceremony.

Services are operated with a fleet of 33 five-car class ES2G Lastochka electric multiple-units built by Ural Locomotive Works (a Siemens – Sinara joint venture). Earlier this year, the Ural-built trains have completed a series of test runs and have already become an integral part of the city’s all-new Overground.

The Lastochka is a new-generation lightweight modular articulated electric multiple-unit train boasting smooth ride and powerful asynchronous traction motors designed for faster acceleration and braking. The Russian-built EMUs are rated for operation over the temperature range of -40 to +40 degrees Celsius and are suitable for handling intensive suburban and metropolitan passenger traffic. The ES2G EMU’s power, safety and reliability parameters surpass those of the earlier-built Europe-sourced trains.

 “The Lastochka higher-speed electric multiple-units supplied by our company for operation on the Moscow Central Ring railway represent an example of successful transfer of European technology and a major breakthrough in passenger service,” said Alexander Saltaev, Director General of the Ural Locomotive Works. “What started in 2011 as merely an ambitious, if not impossible, project is now a reality. The Lastochkas now feature 64.19 percent local content. The figure will reach the prescribed 80 percent early next year.”

An engineering cluster that has emerged around the Ural Locomotive Works includes 160 Russian companies that introduce new technology while delivering high-quality products.

For this project, a unique manufacturing facility – launched by Russian President Vladimir Putin in November 2013 – was built at the Ural Locomotive Works in a span of just 2 years. The first class ES2G Lastochka electric multiple-unit was produced on May 30, 2014. The trains entered regular passenger service on the Moscow-Kryukovo-Tver line of Oktyabskaya Railway on October 1, 2015. Under contract with Russian Railways the Ural Locomotive Works will supply a total of 1,200 higher-speed Lastochka railcars by 2023.