iryo, Spain’s new high-speed train
The consortium formed by Italy’s Trenitalia and Air Nostrum will be launching the train in the second half of 2022
Ilsa, a consortium managed by the Valencian firm, Air Nostrum and Italy’s Trenitalia, has presented its new commercial brand, iryo. This will be competition for Renfe and Ouigo in terms of high-speed travel, accounting for 30% of train journeys. In the medium term, it will run along the three corridors where rail liberalisation first began in Spain: Madrid-Barcelona, Madrid-Valencia and Madrid-Seville. For the first phase however, the operator will only travel on the Madrid-Barcelona line, making stops at Zaragoza and other cities later on. The company, which has already made an impressive investment of 1bneuros in the fleet and in starting operations, is aiming to create 2,600 direct and indirect jobs, and attract 50 million passengers to high-speed in the next 10 years.
Simone Gorini, CEO of ILSA, considers Spain "a country at the global forefront in our benchmark industry, with one of the largest and most modern rail infrastructure networks and a forerunner in innovation, electrification and rolling stock". After 30 years of high-speed in Spain, “we are going to reach a new standard for the 21st century consumer in terms of personalisation, digitisation and sustainability. We want to transform the train travel experience, with the railway as the mode of transport for a more sustainable future, positioning ourselves at the centre of a multimodal concept of mobility”.
The company will begin operations in 2022 with the only fleet of brand new trains on the market: in its first phase there will be 20 state-of-the-art trains, manufactured by Hitachi Rail in collaboration with Bombardier (now the Alstom group), and in which it has invested 800 million euros. iryo will operate 30% of high-speed routes in Spain, and aims to transport 8 million passengers between Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Málaga, Córdoba, Valencia, Alicante and Zaragoza once its operations begin. “Our formula is based on several pillars: very high operational quality, scrupulous compliance with current regulations, state-of-the-art technology and equipment, and a service culture that genuinely makes a difference, and in which we have invested a lot of time and money. I truly believe this set of attributes will be ILSA's main competitive advantage”, stressed Carlos Bertomeu, ILSA president.