Unimog Trucks Tow a 200 t Metro
The new M52 metro line in Amsterdam is 9.7 km long, 7.1 km of which runs underground. If a train breaks down, help is needed quickly. To this end, 2 Mercedes-Benz Unimog road-rail trucks stand ready to help. Working in tandem, these Unimog road-rail vehicles are powerful enough to pull even the heaviest, 200 t metros out of the tunnel up the 4% climb.
This tandem operation has been possible since Amsterdam’s GVB transport company received their second Unimog road-railer. Like the first vehicle delivered in 2017, the current truck is also a U 423 model capable of delivering 231 hp (170 kW) and 663 lb ft (900 Nm) of torque. In order to apply the power to the rails effectively, the vehicles are equipped with a torque converter clutch. The rail guidance system necessary for rail transport and the control for tandem operation are from Zagro in Bad Rappenau, Germany.
The new Unimog U 423 with a closed box body, a wagon brake system and hydraulic re-railing equipment is a flexible multipurpose vehicle for GVB Amsterdam that is used for a huge variety of operative and maintenance tasks. The 2017 Unimog U 423 on the other hand is equipped with a loading crane instead of a box body. It is used by GVB for renewing points, for example, or towing machinery.
GVB, the Amsterdam municipal transport corporation, runs underground trains, trams, city buses and the city ferries. The company transports 227.1 million passengers per year, and with a staff numbering about 5,000 it is one of Amsterdam’s major employers.
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