October 04, 2004

Advanced Passenger Train (APT)

The APT (or Class 370) was a BR-designed train intended to solve the problem of high-speed rail travel by the use of tilting technology. The project began in the 1960s and in the 1970s built a prototype using gas turbine propulsion. I understand that this prototype was successful (see James Hamilton's comment).

The oil crisis of 1973 led to the replacement of the gas turbine with electric traction. The new train went into service in about 1981. Unfortunately, it had two big faults. Firstly, it made many passengers nauseous (see Roger Ford's comment). Secondly, it was unreliable. It was withdrawn and never returned.

The APT still holds the record for the fastest Glasgow to London run and, until the Channel Tunnel Rail Link came along held the record for the fastest train in the UK at 155mph, if memory serves.

See here for images.

Update 08/10/04 Well, whatdyaknow, according to here and here the APT and the 225 aka Class 91 aka Electra shared the record at 162mph.

Patrick Crozier | Comments (2)