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Rolls-Royce MTU engines to power Chinese freight locomotives in South Africa

Rolls-Royce has received a major order from Chinese locomotive manufacturer CNR Dalian (CNR) and its local South African Consortium (CNRRSSA) for the delivery of a total of 232 MTU Series 4000 engines.

The engines are to be installed in new freight locomotives for South African operator Transnet Freight Rail. The total contract value is in the range of €100m. The MTU brand is part of Rolls-Royce Power Systems within the Land & Sea division of Rolls-Royce.

“We are proud to be supplying MTU’s most powerful locomotive engine for one of the largest transport infrastructure projects in South Africa,” said Dr Ulrich Dohle, CEO at Rolls-RoycePower Systems.

Dr Michael Haidinger, CSO at Rolls-Royce Power Systems, added: “Winning this order signals our breakthrough into the market for Chinese freight locomotives, which are being exported in ever larger quantities.”

The type 20V 4000 R63L engines each have an output of 3,300 kilowatts and, as uprated variants of the Series 4000 R43/R53 engines, are the most powerful MTU locomotive engines. CNR is scheduled to receive the engines between 2015 and 2017. The first 20 engines will be produced in Friedrichshafen and delivered directly to CNR. The remaining engines will be delivered to subsidiary MTU South Africa for final assembly, testing and preparation. MTU South Africa is planning additional assembly capacity to carry out this extra activity.

The order for the 232 MTU engines is part of one of the largest infrastructure measures in South Africa’s history: state-owned freight and logistics company Transnet Freight Rail is modernizing its fleet of freight locomotives.

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