Class 390 Pendolino

390119 by Martyn Read

390119 by Martyn Read

Built 2001-2004 and into service from 2002

Manufacturer: Alstom, with Fiat-Ferroviaria tilt system, at Savigliano, Italy, and Washwood Heath, Birmingham

Passenger capacity First: 145, Standard: 294 (390/0)  444 (390/1)

Max Speed (Design) 140mph (225 km/h) (Service) 125mph (201 km/h)

Driving car length 25,1m (82’4”)

Intermediate car length 23,9m (78’5”)

Power 390/0 5,1 MW (6,480hp) 390/1 5,95 MW (7980hp)


390/0 DMRF + MF + PTF + MF + TS + MS + PTSRMB + MS + DMSO

390/1 DMRF + MF + PTF + MF + TS + MS + TS + MS + PTSRMB + MS + DMSO

Service history:

Virgin originally ordered 34 8-car and 19 9-car units, a total of 53 sets. The eight-car sets were quickly strengthened with the addition of a further car in 2004. All were designated 390/0. To cope with rapid growths in passenger numbers, a further 4 11-car sets were delivered from 2009, with 62 additional cars to increase 31 existing 9-car sets to 11. The 11-car sets are desgnated 390/1.

In service each 9-car train comprises is formed of coaches A (standard class driving car) B, C (pantograph buffet/shop) D, E, G, H (pantograph trailer first), J and K (first class driving car.) The first class driving car tends to be at the London end of the train.

The 11-car trains have two additional standard class vehicles in the centre of the train designated F and U.

Virgin have named all the units. Many are named with a Virgin theme: 390001 Virgin Pioneer, 390012 Virgin Star and 390040 Virgin Pathfinder. Others are named after important destinations they serve: 390005 City of Wolverhampton, 390031 City of Liverpool and 390042 City of Bangor/Dinas Bangor which has a different nameplate on each side, one in English, the other in Welsh.

At this time in service there are a total of 22 9-car 390/0 units and 35 11-car 390/1 units.

The Pendolinos were designed with an operational lifespan of at least 30 years, and are expected to remain in service until at least 2032.