Akiem builds the European rail system

Akiem builds the European rail system

Akiem marks a rail industry first with electric locomotives able to pull trains from the Netherlands to Italy, via Belgium, France, Germany, Switzerland or Austria.


Saint-Ouen, 21 March 2024 – With harmonization of Europe’s rail networks emerging as a critical challenge, Akiem, European leader in locomotive and passenger train leasing, today announces a historic agreement with Alstom that signals a major turning point for the European rail industry. For the first time ever, three prototype electric locomotives acquired by Akiem will operate on all available routes along corridors linking the Netherlands, Belgium and Italy, via France, Germany, Switzerland or Austria. For Akiem’s rail operator customers, this represents a more efficient response to their need for a new traction solution that is more powerful, competitive, interoperable and modular, thanks to the last-mile option.

Akiem’s deal with Alstom, which covers homologation testing and early delivery of the first three Traxx MS3 prototypes, highlights its ability to innovate and adapt to the needs of today’s rail market. It follows the framework agreement announced on 17 July 2023 for the acquisition of up to 100 Traxx MS3 locomotives, with a firm order for 65 units.[1]

The prototypes, designed to operate on the Italian, French, German, Austrian and Swiss networks, represent a major advance in the European rail industry’s drive for enhanced interoperability with unprecedented modularity. Two locomotives will operate on DACH-I-FR corridors,[2] with the third running on DACH-I-FR-NL-B corridors,[3] paving the way for new possibilities in cross-border transportation.


Wearing the Akiem livery, the prototypes will offer rail operators an efficient and powerful solution, complete with last-mile option, that meets a fast-growing need in the market. Akiem is the first to own a locomotive capable of traveling the entire corridor between Belgium and Italy, a historic milestone in the development of a more sustainable European rail network.

[1] Press release, 17 July 2023

[2] DACH-I-FR: Germany-Austria-Switzerland + Italy and France

[3] DACH-I-FR-NL-B: Germany-Austria-Switzerland + Italy, France, Netherlands and Belgium

By investing massively in rail corridors connecting France to a dozen other European countries, Akiem is actively helping modernize rail freight industry and grow the European market. This investment opens the door to new routes and encourages modal shift to rail, further strengthening Europe’s position as world leader in sustainable transport. The purpose of our collaboration with Alstom is to fine-tune our planning and preparations before releasing this locomotive to the market

Fabien Rochefort CEO of Akiem

This ground-breaking initiative sees Akiem and Alstom take a decisive step towards the creation of a true European rail system, where sustainable mobility and efficient logistics are essential for tackling the financial and environmental challenges of the 21st century.


Press Release


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