Sprinter (train)

Sprinter (Train)

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Sprinter (train)

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The Sprinter is a family of diesel multiple unit trains in use on the UK railway system. They were built in the 1980s and early 1990s by BREL, Metro Cammell and Leyland. Most are based around a Cummins engine with Voith hydraulic transmission, although some class 158s have a Perkins engine. Sprinters can be seen operating in almost every part of the UK, from rural branch lines to commuter expresses into major cities.

Originally British Rail coined the 'Sprinter' name for the units, mainly to expose the superior acceleration capabilities of the units compared with the First-Generation DMU trains they replaced. Ads such as 'The Sprinters are coming' were locally advertised in newspapers when these trains were scheduled to be introduced. Great play was also made of, in many cases, reduced journey times and on many lines timetables were changed to take advantage.


Two companies, Metro-Cammell and BREL built three coach prototypes for the first batch of Sprinters.

Production units

The production units were all built as two coach units, with the exception of 17 Class 158s and the 22 Class 159 units, which were built with an additional centre car. The Class 153 railcars were converted from the two coach Class 155.

Class 150,153,155, and 156 units have no air-conditioning and a top speed of ; Classes 158 and 159 have air conditioning and a top speed of . All units except the first batch of Class 150s have outer-end gangways, allowing passengers to walk between trains...
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