Global Hybrid Train Market size is projected to grow from 4,904 units in 2020 to 8,389 units by 2030, at a CAGR of 5.5%. Factors such as high gasoline prices, traffic congestion, and greenhouse gas emissions have compelled railway OEMs to explore beyond the use of conventional propulsion systems in trains.
In this pursuit, OEMs are working toward developing hybrid trains that use or combine alternative fuel sources, such as hydrogen fuel cells, electric batteries, CNG, LNG, and solar energy, to meet the required efficiency and emission standards. The scarcity of natural resources and the rising cost of fuel will likely shift the focus from diesel trains to eco-friendly transport and boost the demand for hybrid trains during the forecast period. Also, from the demand side, train operators, freight companies, and government bodies are now more inclined toward trains having efficient and eco-friendly operations. Many countries have announced the phasing out of conventional diesel trains, which are responsible for greenhouse gas emissions.
The hybrid train market is dominated by established players such as CRRC (China), Bombardier (Canada), Alstom (France), Siemens (Germany), Wabtec Corporation (US), Hyundai Rotem (South Korea), Toshiba (Japan), and Stadler (Switzerland).
Regenerative braking analysis, autonomous trains, AI in maintenance and overhaul, and growing use of fuel cell power in heavy load transportation are the key market trends or technologies which will have a major impact on the hybrid train market in the future.
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The passenger segment is expected to be the largest during the forecast period
The passenger segment is estimated to be the largest market in the forecast. The hybrid train offers cost-effective and efficient transportation of passengers as well as freight. Several cities are implementing new rail infrastructure projects to reduce road congestion and provide an affordable means of transportation at an intercity as well as an intra-city level. Increasing urbanization, growing demand for increased connectivity, comfort, reliability, and safety will boost the demand for the passenger segment in this market.
100-200 km/h segment will be leading the hybrid train market during the forecast period
As of 2020, the 100-200 km/h segment is estimated to be the largest segment in the hybrid train market. The dominance of electro-diesel trains in the hybrid train market is the key reason that the 100-200 km/h segment is leading the market. Most of these trains are running with a maximum speed between 100–200 km/h. Apart from electro-diesel, companies are now offering battery-electric as well as hydrogen fuel cell-powered trains with maximum speeds between 100 km/h and 200 km/h. For instance, Alstom offers battery hybrid (yet to be deployed on Leipzig-Chemnitz line) and hydrogen passenger trains in Germany, with maximum speeds of up to 160 km/h and 140 km/h, respectively.
The Asia Oceania hybrid train market is projected to hold the largest share by 2030
Asia Oceania is projected to account for the largest share of the hybrid train market during the forecast period as it is home to renowned hybrid train manufacturers such as CRRC, Hyundai Rotem, and Toshiba, which offer advanced solutions in the region as well as all over the world. The Chinese and Indian railway industries are the prime reasons why the region is leading the global hybrid train market. These countries have a large and dense railway network, and they are trying to promote eco-friendly trains as well. Thus, the growing sales of electro-diesel trains in these countries will be driving the market in Asia Oceania. Japan and South Korea have developed, tested, and deployed some advanced hybrid trains. For instance, JR East, the largest passenger railway company in Japan, is planning to develop and test new hydrogen fuel cell-powered electric trains at the beginning of 2021. Apparently, the company will be spending around USD 37 million for the testing.
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- In July 2020, Hitachi Rail and Hyperdrive Innovation signed an exclusive agreement to develop battery packs to power zero-emission trains and create a battery hub in the North East of the UK.
- In July 2020, Cummins Inc. announced an agreement to form a joint venture with NPROXX, a leader in hydrogen storage and transportation, for hydrogen storage tanks. The joint venture will continue under the name NPROXX. The joint venture will provide customers with hydrogen and compressed natural gas storage products for both on-highway and rail applications..
- In March 2020, Siemens Mobility received the first order for battery-powered trains. SFBW ordered 20 Mireo Plus B trains from Siemens Mobility. The two-car electric trainsets with 120 seats can operate on rail routes with or without overhead power lines thanks to their battery hybrid drive and are scheduled to operate in Network 8 of the Ortenau regional system.
- In September 2019, Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) closed on the previously announced acquisition of fuel cell and hydrogen production technologies provider, Hydrogenics Corporation.
- In June 2019, Hyundai Rotem teamed up with Hyundai Motor Company to develop hydrogen-electric trains by the end of 2020.
- In February 2019, Wabtec Corporation announced a successful merger with GE Transportation.
- In December 2018, Hitachi Rail Europe (HRE) worked with the University of Birmingham to test hydrogen trains on known rail routes.
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