COMMUTERS and passengers who rely on c2c trains can look forward to brand new trains coming later this year.

The Trenitalia-owned rail operator has commenced network testing and driver training for its new 720 Aventra trains set to serve its London Fenchurch Street to Shoeburyness line.

Bosses have remained tight lipped on exactly when the 12 five-carriages trains will be ready for passenger use, stating aims to have them in operation “later this year”.


The trains were purchased in a £100 million 2017 deal with Alstom, formerly Bombardier prior to a 2021 takeover.

A c2c Spokesman said: “Customers will benefit from new trains coming to the network later this year. The trains are expected to be in passenger service towards the end of the year, but first they need to undergo network testing and driver training. 

“The new class 720 trains offer more seating and are an ‘open gangway’ style, so customers can walk between carriages easier.

“Once in passenger service late this year, we know passengers will enjoy these new trains and the facilities they offer.”

The train will also boast dedicated cycle stores; power and USB ports for every seat; WiFi; improved passenger information screens; and toilets.

The Aventra is one of the fastest-selling trains in the UK rail industry and is manufactured in in Derby.

The firm's order of 60 carriages will add capacity for over 5,000 more passengers to c2c’s current fleet.

Each new train, which will operate in a fixed set of five-carriages, will include more than 450 seats.

The trains had originally been scheduled to enter operation in 2024, but the rail firm has been working hard to accelerate that date.

Julian Drury, c2c managing director, said: “We have accelerated our original plans for new trains because of the scale of growth planned in the boom areas of south Essex and east London, and these British-built trains will help ensure c2c is playing its part in unlocking those benefits to the economy.”

Rail firm rival Greater Anglia already operates more than 100 720 class trains on its Liverpool Street to Clacton, Colchester Town, and Ipswich services, as well as its West Anglia mainline.