High-speed rail operator Eurostar has announced plans to redesign its 28-strong fleet by 2012, with Italian design consultancy Pininfarina.
With a portfolio including Italy’s high-speed trains, as well as Swiss, Danish and Norwegian railways, Pininfarina has won the contract to design Eurostar’s new interior, as well as the engineering and exterior livery, while French rail company SNCF will carry out the work.
A refurbishment of the soft furnishings and buffet car on the Eurostar trains was completed in 2005, but this will be a more comprehensive overhaul.
Nicolas Petrovic, chief operating officer for Eurostar, said: “We want to offer our travellers the highest standards in comfort, style and innovation, and I am confident that together we will deliver Eurostar trains that fully meet the 21st-century expectations of our travellers.”
Turin-based Pininfarina has worked with car manufacturers including Ferrari, Maserati , Peugeot and Ford, and is currently developing the electric Pininfarina BlueCar, due to go into production in 2011.
Lowie Vermeersch, design director at Pininfarina, said: "Together with Eurostar we're determined to create a design that focuses on a great travel experience, thus mixing our style and functionality with a clear vision of future train travel."
The European high-speed rail network will gain another new service in 2011, with the launch of Italo, by the first privately operated high-speed rail company in Italy (see online news March 20). Italo’s interior design is by Italian design consultancy Italdesign, also based in Turin.
Report by Sara Turner