The Intercity Express Programme (IEP) is potentially the most significant rolling stock investment programme in the UK for over 30 years. It is a unique opportunity for the market to contribute to the development, introduction and long-term operation of a new generation of trains to serve Britain's rail network's long-distance routes well into the 21st century.

The primary objectives of the programme are to:

  • Optimise value for money, taking a long term whole-system approach;
  • Improve passenger capacity and make best use of available route capacity;
  • Ensure flexibility of train deployment to cater for future change in use, demand, power and environmental requirements;
  • Deliver a consistent service in terms of the availability and reliability of new trains;
  • Provide for the safety and security of passengers and railway employees;
  • Deliver an environmentally sustainable solution in terms of improved energy efficiency and reduced noise and emissions, and more sustainable construction and maintenance compared to existing trains and;
  • Meet customer requirements in terms of the facilities and environment provided for passengers.
  • The fleet requirement for IEP is for 866 vehicles.  The scope of service required comprises the design, manufacture, financing, servicing and maintenance of the complete package, over the entire life of the fleet. 


To find out more about the Intercity Express Programme and our plans to support growth and improvements on some of Britain's busiest intercity rail routes, please visit the Department for Transport's IEP policy page