2017 Integrated Report – Departure into a new era

Events in 2017

Vehicle availability improved overall

Vehicle availability was very stretched during the second half of the year under review. Individual events, such as running over objects on the track, the massive disruption of vehicle rotation and the reduction of maintenance ca­­pac­ity in Basel due to the Rastatt route closure led to high levels of damage and a lack of passenger cars in trains, in particular for IC stock. Positive effects resulted from:

  • the reduction of drive and brake faults for higher operating quality,
  • the focus on reducing the level of passenger car damage and
  • the approval of all 17 407-series ICE 3 for transport services in France.

The program to refit the ICE 3 fleet with new drive wheel sets will probably continue until 2018. Refitting the ICE T fleet will probably continue until the end of 2019 and is a prerequisite for the resumption of the tilting body system (tilting technology) of the ICE T fleet. Tilting body operations to and from Vienna were launched on schedule.

The operation of the IC 2 fleet is now largely stable. Two rolling stock remedies are being carried out for extra optimization, the first of which was completed to remedy “teething problems” and carry out constructive improvements at the end of June. By the end of the year, hardware and software updates were developed in a second rolling stock remedy, as well as warranty work.

Vehicle projects continued

The REDESIGNNO. 87 of ICE 3 was continued. After 15 years of operation, the 63 trains will be made fit for the future by 2021. Fifty 403-series trains will also be equipped with ETCS and can then be used on high-speed lines. Ten vehicles were overhauled and delivered in the year under review. After modernization, the vehicles can be used for at least another 15 years.

The refitting of ICE 1 with the ETCS train protection system was realized on schedule, but the start of operation in December 2017 was hampered by numerous individual train protection errors and led to delays in operation during the first few days of operation.

ICE 4 starts regular operations

After completion of the about 12-month trial, eight ICE 4 trains went into regular operation when the timetable changed in December 2017. This was the first time we trialed a train with customers and employees before launching a new product. In the trial, a high-frequency vibration was de­tected as the mileage of the two test trains increased, but this was not considered to be a safety issue. The supplier developed both a short-term and a long-term solution.

Other events

  • The first CO₂-freeICE facilityNO. 48 has been developed in Cologne and will be put into operation at the beginning of 2018. 
  • Twenty years after the first DB Lounge was opened, we presented the first lounge with a new concept and a new design in Nuremberg.
  • Since January, we have offered free wifi in both ICE classes. In the spring, we also launched an entertainment service in the ICE portal called maxdome onboard.
  • The ICE train car sequence at departure, transfer and destination stations can also be seen in the information about connections on bahn.de. Selected service and facility features of the ICE trains are now also displayed online.