British Rail Class 802

The British Rail Class 802[3][7] is a type of bi-mode multiple unit train being built by Hitachi Rail Europe for Great Western Railway, TransPennine Express and Hull Trains.

British Rail Class 802 AT300
The standard class interior of a GWR Class 802
In service18 August 2018 (GWR)[1]
28 September 2019 (TPE)[2]
5 December 2019 (HT)
ManufacturerHitachi Rail Europe
Built atKasado factory (Japan)
Pistoia (Italy)
Family nameA-Train
ReplacedInterCity 125
Class 180 Adelante
Class 185 Desiro
Number under construction46 x 5-car
14 x 9-car
Formation5-car: DPTS-MS-MS-MS-DPTF
CapacityGWR: 5 car set: 290 standard, 36 first - 9 car set: 576 standard, 71 first [4]
TPE: 318 standard, 24 first [5]
Operator(s)Great Western Railway
Hull Trains
TransPennine Express
Line(s) servedGreat Western Main Line
Cornish Main Line
East Coast Main Line
Car body constructionAluminium
Car length26 m (85 ft 3 58 in)[6]
DoorsSliding pocket, at body ends.
Maximum speed125 mph (201 km/h)
Minor modifications: 140 mph (225 km/h)
Prime mover(s)MTU 12V 1600 R80L
Engine typeV 12
Cylinder count12
Power output700 kW (940 hp) per engine
Acceleration1 m/s2 (3.3 ft/s2)
Electric system(s)25 kV 50 Hz AC overhead lines
Current collection methodPantograph
Safety system(s)AWS, TPWS, ETCS, ATP
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge

Based on the design of the Hitachi A-train, the train is part of the Hitachi AT300 product family.[8] Each train operating company has also given their own units a unique brand; Great Western Railway's units are branded as Intercity Express Trains (IET)[9], TransPennine Expresses' units are branded as Nova 1s[10] and Hull Trains' units are branded as Paragons.[11]


In mid-2015, Great Western Railway said it had arranged to procure 173 new rail vehicles from Hitachi Rail, with options for another 150.[12] At the time, GWR was beginning the process of introducing a new fleet of intercity trains as part of the Government's Intercity Express Programme.[13] This project involved the procurement of both wholly electric units (Class 801), and "bi-mode" trains (Class 800), powered by electric traction motors capable of running from overhead electric wires or on-board diesel generators. These trains were intended to replace the existing High Speed Trains following the electrification of the Great Western Main Line. However, electrification will only go as far as Cardiff Central, with the route beyond requiring diesel traction (hence the need to procure trains capable of operating without overhead wires).[14]

The purchase of 173 additional vehicles was with the intention that these new bi-mode trains, similar to the Class 800s, would be used on services into Devon and Cornwall. These trains would consist of 22 five-car and seven nine-car units.[15] The option for a further 150 vehicles would be formed into another 30 five-car units.[12]

Initially, owing to Hitachi's facility at Newton Aycliffe in County Durham being at capacity, the intention was to construct the trains at the Kasado factory in Kudamatsu in Japan. However, following Hitachi's purchase of the Italian train manufacturer AnsaldoBreda, construction was moved to Hitachi's Pistoia plant,[16] with the first unit being completed in February 2018.[17]

The trains were expected to enter service with GWR from 2018,[15] with the aim of reducing journey times from London to Exeter by up to five minutes, to Plymouth by up to six minutes, and to Penzance by up to 14 minutes.[15]


The Class 802s are broadly identical to the Class 800 bi-mode trains used in the Intercity Express Programme, and are used in a similar way; they run as electric trains where possible, and are equipped with the same diesel generator engines as the Class 800. However, they utilise higher engine operating power 700 kW (940 hp) per engine as opposed to 560 kW (750 hp) and are fitted with larger fuel tanks to cope with the gradients and extended running in diesel mode expected on the long unelectrified stretches they will operate on.[3]

Great Western Railway

GWR took delivery of 36 sets in 2017 and 2018: 22 five-car and 14 nine-car sets,[18] an increase from the 29 sets initially ordered in 2015.[19][20]

Main line testing of the Class 802 began in Somerset in August 2017.[21] They were due to be introduced on 16 July 2018.[22] A demonstration run for invited guests from Penzance to Exeter St Davids was held on 17 August 2018.[23] The first two units (802 006 and 802 007) entered traffic the following day on 18 August 2018, on a Bristol Temple Meads to Swansea service.[1] The same units were first used in passenger service in Cornwall on 20 August 2018, with the service from London Paddington to Penzance and the return to London.[24]

Hull Trains

In November 2016, Hull Trains said it would buy five five-car AT300 sets to replace the Alstom Class 180 diesel multiple-units which it currently uses on the Hull to London service.[25] The first body shell was completed at the Kasado plant in August 2018.[26] Driver training on Class 802s, using stock delivered to Transpennine Express, began in August 2019.[27] In the same month Hull Trains announced that its new train would be known as the Paragon, named after Hull Paragon station.[11]

On 7 November 2019, Hull Trains took delivery of their first unit.[28] This unit was used in the official launch of the Paragon fleet on 25 November, where the full livery was unveiled at Hull station.[29] This same unit that was unveiled (802301) entered service on Thursday 5 December working the 10:33 Hull to London King's Cross, and the 13:48 return working.[30]

TransPennine Express

TransPennine Express will operate 19 five-car Class 802 sets, primarily on the North Transpennine Line between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh.[31][32][33] These trains were initially given the Class 803 designation,[34] before being redesignated as 802/2s prior to delivery of the first unit. Production began in December 2017,[35] and testing began on the East Coast Main Line during July 2018,[36] with the fleet due to enter service from summer 2019.[37][38] TransPennine Express formally accepted the first of their Class 802 trains in July 2019.[39] TransPennine Express have branded their new overall fleet as Nova, with each of its new types designated as either '1', '2' or '3' - the Class 802s are to be termed as Nova 1.[40]

The first Nova 1 entered revenue earning service on 28 September 2019, with unit 802201 working the 06:03 from Newcastle to Liverpool Lime Street and the return 09:25 service.[2]

Named trains

Great Western Railway's Intercity Express Trains are being named after "inspirational people" who have influenced the regions that the company serves.[41]

Great Western Railway's named / liveried Intercity Express Trains
Unit number Date Name
802 011 8 December 2018 Captain Robert Falcon Scott / Sir Joshua Reynolds
802 013 9 April 2019 Michael Eavis[42]
802 008 13 April 2019 Rick Rescorla / RNLB Solomon Browne[43][44]
802 101 28 November 2019 Nancy Astor[45]

Fleet details

Class Operator No. Built Year Built Coaches Unit nos.
Class 802/0 Intercity Express Train Great Western Railway 22 201719 5 802 001802 022
Class 802/1 Intercity Express Train 14 9 802 101802 114
Class 802/2 Nova 1 TransPennine Express 19 5 802 201802 219
Class 802/3 Paragon Hull Trains 5 5 802 301802 305


On 14 September 2018 the 14:00 GWR Penzance to Paddington service broke down at 17:15 just north of Exeter. Passengers had to be removed from the train with ladders and transferred to another train.[46]

During testing of a Class 802 on the evening of 16 October 2018 ahead of its handover to GWR, severe damage was caused to 500 m (1,600 ft) of overhead power lines in the Hanwell area, outside London Paddington station.[47] This led to service cancellations and delays that night and the following two days.[48]


  1. "GWR launches Class 802s in service". Rail Magazine. 20 August 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
  2. "First Nova 1 trainset enters revenue service with TPE". Railway Gazette. 30 September 2019. Retrieved 13 October 2019.
  3. Pritchard, Robert (February 2016). "The Future for Intercity Travel". Today's Railways. Platform 5 (170): 40–43.
  6. "AT-300: High-speed". Archived from the original on 19 December 2015. Retrieved 9 December 2015.
  7. "Directions in respect of a track access contract between Network Rail Infrastructure Limited and Hull Trains Company Limited" (PDF). Office of Rail and Road. 2 March 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  8. "AT300 for the West of England | Hitachi Rail EU". Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  9. "New Intercity Express Train carries passengers for the first time". Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  10. "Nova 1 | New Trains | TransPennine Express". Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  11. "Hull Trains reveals name of new fleet". Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  12. "AT300 for the West of England".
  13. "£4.5 billion investment in new trains creates new jobs". Department for Transport. 25 July 2012. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  14. "Modernising the Great Western route". Network Rail. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  15. "UK DfT approves First Great Western's £361m Hitachi train order".
  16. "Great Western AT300 trainsets to be built in Italy",, 22 December 2015
  17. "Hitachi presents first Italian-built class 802 for GWR". International Railway Journal. 9 February 2018. Retrieved 12 February 2018.
  18. "GWR launches Class 802s in service". Rail Magazine. Retrieved 6 May 2019.
  19. "Great Western Railway orders more Hitachi trainsets". Railway Gazette. 3 August 2016. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  20. "Hitachi to build nine additional bi-mode trains for GWR". Rail Magazine. Retrieved 6 May 2019.
  21. "GWR's Intercity Express trains begin testing".
  22. "GWR West of England Class 802s enter traffic from July 16".
  23. Shaw, Neil (17 August 2018). "New train carries passengers across Devon and Cornwall for first time today". PlymouthLive. Archived from the original on 17 August 2018. Retrieved 18 August 2018.
  24. "New Intercity Express train carries passengers to Penzance for first time". Retrieved 5 January 2019.
  25. "£60m Hull Trains electro-diesel train deal signed". Railway Gazette. 2 November 2016.
  26. David Burroughs (29 August 2018). "First Hull Trains class 802 body shell completed". International Railway Journal. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  27. "Hull Trains drivers begin training on new '802s'". Rail Magazine. 21 August 2019.
  28. "Hull Trains prepares to introduce its five brand-new Hitachi bi-modes". Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  29. "Brand new £60 million Hull Trains fleet unveiled". Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  30. Holden, Michael (6 December 2019). "First brand new train for Hull Trains completes first passenger service". RailAdvent. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  31. "TPE goes for loco-hauled trains for new franchise". Today's Railways. Sheffield: Platform 5. May 2016.
  32. Hitachi awarded TransPennine Express multiple unit contract Railway Gazette International 31 March 2016
  33. Hitachi scoops 95-car TPE train deal Rail Magazine 1 April 2016
  34. "Long Term Passenger Rolling Stock Strategy for the Rail Industry" (PDF). Rail Delivery Group. March 2018. p. 54.
  35. "Work begins on new futuristic train fleet for TransPennine Express". 19 December 2017. Archived from the original on 26 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  36. David Briginshaw (25 July 2018). "Testing starts of first TransPennine Express Nova 1 trains". International Railway Journal. Retrieved 26 July 2018.
  37. "Summer arrival for first TPE '802/2s'".
  38. "A major production year for the new TransPennine Express fleet".
  39. "TPE welcome its first Class 802/2s". Retrieved 23 August 2019.
  40. "Nova 1". TransPennine Express. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  41. "Our named Intercity Express Trains | Great Western Railway". Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  42. Gladwin, Anna (9 April 2019). "Michael Eavis has train named after him". somersetlive. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  43. "Train named after Cornish 9/11 hero". 13 April 2019. Retrieved 14 April 2019.
  44. Devereux, Nigel (2 May 2019). "Steam, Diesel and Electric on show at Long Rock Open Day". The Railway Magazine. Retrieved 22 September 2019.
  45. "Train named after Plymouth's first female MP Nancy Astor". ITV News. Retrieved 4 December 2019.
  46. "Hundreds stranded on new high-speed train in Devon". BBC News. 14 September 2018. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
  47. "Paddington station: Passengers face major disruption". 17 October 2018.
  48. "Paddington station: 'Near normal' service after rail chaos". 18 October 2018.

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