The new trains are due to enter service in 2024, with the whole fleet in place by 2026.
Features include:Spacious walk-through carriages, Live travel information, Air conditioning, Improved accessibility features and mobile device charging points.
A major visible change is that rather than being three sets of two carriages coupled together, the new train is one single 5-car carriage that you can walk all the way through from end to end.
Apart from passenger convenience, having fully walk-through trains helps with safety as the Passenger Service Agents (PSA's) can get to any part of the train if needed.
However, an innovation is that if someone were to pull the passenger alarm, the CCTV in that carriage will take a photo and sends it automatically to a tablet device that all PSAs will carry so they can see instantly what the issue is.
The photo will also be sent to the DLR control centre so they can take action as well if they think it’s needed.
Above & below, DLR trains are driverless, with a Passenger Service Agent (PSA) on board.
An excellent view can be had through the front windows of the train
Apart from the front and rear seats, the rest of the seating is longitudinal. There are three multi-use areas, where the seats flip up so the space can be used for cycles or luggage, and there are spaces prioritised for wheelchairs and buggies.
54 new trains will replace the 33 oldest trains in the fleet, some of which are more than 30 years old. The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has funded 11 of the extra trains.
TfL say "The new trains will help us to improve the frequency and reliability of services and support population and employment growth across the network, particularly in parts of the Royal Docks and the Isle of Dogs where the DLR is the main transport option".
|The new trains are being built in Spain by CAF|
The first train has carried out fault-free running on the test track at CAF’s Beasain facility and has now been delivered to the UK to begin around nine months of testing on the DLR network.
This will comprise two elements – integration testing with the Thales automatic signalling system and platform-train interface testing to prove the train in operating conditions.
DLR trains have always been driverless, but with the provision of manual operation if required, by on board Passenger Service Agents who patrol the train
Initially testing will take place at night, before daytime testing begins during off-peak hours between service trains.