Originally scheduled for June 2020, then in June 2021, the Italian TGV which provides the Paris-Milan link via Lyon and Turin should embark travelers from next October,
Operated by Thello, a subsidiary of Trenitalia, this TGV has already carried out a series of “blank runs” to ensure that everything was working, according to information revealed by the letter “Ville Rail et Transports”.
These trainsets are of the Zefiro V300 type designed by Bombardier-Hitachi, they have already received approval to operate on the French rail network.
They will be able to travel at very high speed (300 km / h) on the Paris-Lyon axis and at 200 km / h on conventional tracks.
Two daily round trips are planned from Gare de Lyon, in the form of an international cabotage service, according to the latest annual report from the Transport Regulatory Authority (ART).
The Paris-Lyon route open to travelers
Thus, according to the rules of cabotage, travelers will be able to take the train on the only French section Paris-Lyon. This announcement is all the more important since it will be the first time that a foreign TGV has come to compete with the SNCF fast train on its land. A competitive launch which takes place within the framework of “open access”, such an operation having been permitted by European texts for several years.
However, this could have happened earlier, because competition has been open for years on the territory of the European Union.
SNCF indeed operates TGVs on other lines to European countries, under agreements with foreign operators or other investors (Eurostar, Thalys, Lyria) without head-on competition.
In addition, the French company has also already launched low-cost Ouigo services on the Madrid-Barcelona axis in Spain.
On this axis, the SNCF fills its trains to 95% on average, according to the company.
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