null Talgo y su tecnología única en el mundo cumplen 80 años


28 Oct 2022

Talgo and its unique technology celebrate their 80th anniversary

  • Over the past eight decades, the railway company has become a technological leader of world reference thanks to its unique and distinctive technology.
  • The trains that Talgo manufactures today have been built based on the founding innovative concepts, which have given Talgo a clear competitive advantage.
  • The successful global company employs more than 2,600 people of 47 nationalities and operates in Europe, North America, the Middle East and Central Asia, with industrial presence in seven countries.

Madrid, October 28, 2022

Talgo, the leading Spanish company in the design, manufacture and maintenance of high-speed light rail vehicles, commemorates today, October 28, 2022, the 80th anniversary of its foundation by José Luis de Oriol y Urigüen and Alejandro Goicoechea Omar. With innovation as the core foundation of the company, Talgo is today a global technology leader; a company recognized for its capacity for innovation, unique and distinctive technology and reliability, and a world reference for sustainable high-speed, long and medium distance trains, designed and manufactured entirely in Spain.

Talgo was born as a pioneering project that modernized the railway in Spain with its concept of an articulated light train with independent wheels; a faster train, which reduced energy consumption, tractor effort and travel times, increasing safety and passenger comfort. In 1942, the alliance of the two pioneers, an engineer who persevered in a revolutionary idea and a businessman who invested practically everything in that idea. Talgo's technology was then considered revolutionary, completely different from what had been invented in 1825, more than a century earlier, in the United Kingdom. The Talgo technology was characterized by many unique features that still persist today: lightness, low energy consumption, accessibility and passenger comfort, resistance and low maintenance costs.

These differential values, together with the innovation that has always characterized the company, have enabled Talgo to become a technological point of reference throughout 80 years. The trains that Talgo designs and manufactures today are built on the founding innovative concepts that have given Talgo a clear competitive advantage. This is reflected in its flagship trains in the world, such as the very high-speed train Talgo Avril, the German train of the future, the ICE L (Talgo 230), and the high-speed train that crosses the Saudi Arabian desert daily between Mecca and Medina.

Carlos Palacio Oriol, President of Talgo, said: "These 80 years have been defined by the innovative founding spirit that characterizes us and that has allowed us, since the first day, to position ourselves at the forefront of industrial development. Our mission is to continue working so that more and more countries and people can benefit from the technological advantages offered by our trains, which are a benchmark for safety, technological innovation, sustainability, excellence and comfort in the global railway industry". He added: "I would like to thank all the people who work at Talgo for their commitment, dedication and effort to make this company a technological leader in the global railway market".

Growth has accompanied the evolution of Talgo, which, during these eight decades, has expanded internationally, anticipating the needs of rail transport, and expanding and diversifying its portfolio. This has resulted in an exponential growth that has made the company a successful multinational employing more than 2,600 people of 47 nationalities, reaching a large part of Europe, North America, the Middle East and Central Asia, with an industrial presence in seven countries (including the United States and Germany).

Talgo's technology is unique in the world

Talgo's technology allows its trains to be the only ones in the world with a single, low floor at platform level, which translates into direct comfort for passengers, who do not have to climb stairs, and shorter boarding and disembarking times for passengers. Its trains are also the only ones capable of taking full advantage of the European gauge, which implies a greater width of the rail vehicles, allowing more passengers to be transported with greater comfort for them.

These and other competitive advantages combined, have made the company's trains a benchmark for maximum efficiency per passenger carried, combining maximum speed and greater seating capacity with a lower tare weight and therefore a lower power requirement compared to the same train length. In the current climate emergency context, this energy efficiency entails a minimal impact on greenhouse gas emissions.

Talgo is also a reference in new developments in composite materials, which reduce the weight of the wheelsets and other elements of rail vehicles by 50%, further lightening the overall weight of a train that is already, by definition, light. The company is also advancing in new traction technologies, such as the Vittal One train powered by green hydrogen, whose prototype TPH2 is currently undergoing dynamic tests and which the manufacturer will deploy in collaboration with Repsol.

Talgo Avril, the most advanced very high speed train of Talgo

Talgo Avril is Talgo's most advanced very high-speed train, a benchmark for quality and operational competitiveness in the very high-speed rail segment. It is part of a highly flexible technological platform that allows each delivery to be adapted to the increasingly complex needs of the European rail market with different blocks depending on its interior commercial configuration, its ability to change gauge (Iberian and international), and its equipment to be operated on various types of rail networks.

Its high capacity and light overall weight allows Avril trains to minimize energy consumption and multiply efficiency, which in turn contributes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and further enhances the train's position as the most sustainable form of transport. In addition, its composition of 12 passenger cars and 200 meters in length is located on a single floor and at the same height as the platform, allowing passengers to access the train and move throughout its interior without steps or ramps. This is a unique Talgo capability that not only facilitates access for people with reduced mobility, but also offers an easy journey for all passengers, from parents with baby carriages to passengers with bulky luggage or bicycles.

Talgo's ICE L: European benchmark in international long-distance transport

The ICE L is a long-distance train that is being designed and manufactured by Talgo and has been chosen by the German operator Deutsche Bahn to become the new design reference for the trains of the future. This new train, based on the Talgo 230 platform, will offer the highest standards of accessibility, as it will be the first long-distance train in Germany to allow full access at platform level and on a single floor. Its access without steps, and at platform level, is a characteristic of the trains manufactured by Talgo, which will facilitate the journey for all passengers. In addition, the ICE L will facilitate mobility inside the train and will have the highest performance.

In terms of technical characteristics, the ICE L trains will consist of a multi-system locomotive (compatible with different power supply voltages and different signaling systems) and 17 passenger cars, a number that can later be adapted to demand, thanks to the train's versatility. In addition to being used with the Talgo locomotive, these trains will be compatible with other tractor units, guaranteeing a very high level of interoperability: they will be international trains and it is planned that they will operate domestic routes in Germany, as well as connecting Germany with the Netherlands, Austria and the Swiss border.

The German operator Deutsche Bahn will use this train designed and manufactured by Talgo to promote the decarbonization of mobility in Central Europe with long-distance services, thanks to the lighter weight of the vehicle and its lower energy consumption. This model, based on the Talgo 230 platform, will also be used by the Danish operator DSB to contribute to decarbonizing mobility on its rail network.

The Haramain high-speed train, the greatest technological challenge in the railway history

With the high-speed rail project in Saudi Arabia (Haramain), Talgo faced what is probably the greatest technological challenge in the history of railroads: to supply a fleet of trains capable of running at over 300 km/h in the most hostile environment on the planet. Talgo 350 trains, thanks to their technical and constructive characteristics, are now able to withstand both extreme temperatures and the abrasive effects of desert sand.

The construction of the Talgo 350 for the Haramain involved the development of patents in areas as diverse as protection against dust and sand, passenger safety and comfort in extreme climates or new solutions to reduce wear between the wheel and the rail in the desert. The trains were adapted to the climate and geographical particularities, reinforcing the systems with the so-called "desert pack", which incorporates more than 30 additional technologies specifically developed for this project. These technologies are aimed at making the train more efficient in all environmental conditions and improving maintenance efficiency.

About Talgo

Talgo S.A. is the leading company in the design, manufacture, and maintenance of high-speed lightweight trains with industrial presence, among other countries: in Spain, Germany, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Saudi Arabia and the United States. The Company is recognized at an international level for its capacity for innovation, unique distinctive technology, and reliability. Talgo is Renfe’s main supplier of trains for the high-speed project for the “Haramain” railway line between Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. Talgo is also the manufacturer chosen by the German operator Deutsche Bahn and the Danish operator DSB to decarbonize mobility with Talgo 230 long-distance trains.


For additional information

Press contact: Estudio de Comunicación (+34 915765250);