In 2019, Trenitalia and Hitachi commissioned us the complete design of their new regional train for Italy, object of one of the biggest bids of the last 20 years on national territory. The Hitachi HMU, successively called “Blues”, is a hybrid train supposed to be moving the biggest number of Italian commuters, in a variety of different regions, each with its own, specific needs.
GFG Rail constantly interacted with the manufacturer, Hitachi Rail, and the operator, Trenitalia, to initially customize the single deck train to the operator’s needs. Design activity, in terms of styling, modeling and feasibility, was undergone for the complete interiors and for the exteriors of the train, transforming the original double deck Caravaggio into the single deck unit.
All areas were specifically designed: saloons, vestibules, toilets, bike areas. For the latter, GFG Rail participated to meetings and presented its work to unions and governmental groups, in order to obtain their approval for Trenitalia and consequently for Hitachi. Once design was 90% frozen, GFG Rail developed a 1:1 scale mock-up of the exteriors and the interiors of the train, to be used for design validation with all of the executives from the operator, for road shows in order to present the train to the Italian population, and most generally to anticipate the first real train due 24 months after.
GFG Rail worked initially as the designer of the train for the manufacturer, successively as the design consultant for the train operator (Trenitalia), being in charge of the design activities of the train all the way to their final validation also with all national groups who might have voice in passenger/user satisfaction during train operations.