Product Features and Details
Road no. 50 85 39-33 521-8
After the Great Depression, the SBB suffered from a decline in passenger volume and was therefore urged to make service range improvements. To increase the permissible speed on the numerous curvy sections and to enable faster acceleration after stops, particularly lightweight passenger coaches were developed. The resulting fouraxle coaches with a weight of only 25 - 29 tonnes went down in Swiss railway history as light steel coaches and were built in a total of 1,163 specimens from 1936 onwards. The great success of the city express trains equipped with them made it advisable to continue the development. This resulted in so-called “Einheitswagen I” (EW I - standardised coaches) after World War II the first two of which were built in 1956. These vehicles, too, continued the success story of the light steel coaches. Within twelve years, 1,028 units of the 2nd class EW I coach alone were built. A total of 1,249 EW I were manufactured for the SBB. Further 181 coaches were ordered by various Swiss privately-owned railways. As the EW I stood the test of time in an excellent manner, only a few items had to be enhanced in its follow-up development towards EW II. In order to enable a lowfloor design, the EW II received new bogies with a wheel base of 2.500 mm and a wheel rolling circle diameter of only 800 mm. As the window line was accordingly lower as well, the coaches could clearly be identified in a train combination with EW I. The now double-glazed windows were also made of a single-piece and could be rolled down. While the 1st class coaches otherwise fully corresponded to their EW I counterparts, the 2nd class coaches were by 1 m longer due to enlarged seat spacing. The seats had red leatherette upholstery in the smoking compartments and a green one in the nonsmoking compartments; the walls were cladded by a green wood imitation. From 1965 to 1976, a total of 798 coaches were produced, including baggage and mail cars that did not exist in the EW-I range. 80 A-coaches, 145 AB-coaches, and 277 B-coaches were built for the SBB as normal day coaches. When delivered, all these coaches had a typical green paint coating and were already equipped with the Vst III control line so that they could be used in shuttleservice trains. The EW II were substituted for the light steel coaches in the city express trains and were also employed in other long-distance traffic. A special agreement allowed, among other things, their use in Italy and Germany.