5 posts • joined Saturday 27th November 2010 13:07 GMT
Iberian broad gauge is used in Portugal too.
The new high speed lines in Spains were mainly built to standard gauge. Some Talgo trains have variable axles so they can run on both standard and Iberian gauge. The technology has been there since the 1960's when the first Catalan Talgo trainsets were introduced with a gauge changing facility near Port Bou (Spanish/French border). The original Catalan Talgo ran from Barcelona to Genève. Later is was cut to Montpellier where a change to the TGV is provided.
What the article misses are the different loading gauges even if the rail gauges are the same. The British loading gauge means that trains are narrower and lower than in continental Europe. No doulbe decker trains in the UK therefore.
Great for hire schemes
I have tested one of these in NL. It's a very good drive. Extremely quiet and therefore great for music lovers. The range improves considerably if you turn of heating and air conditioning.
Here's a little video I made when the first one was unveiled in NL.
Don't think the concept is for anyone but commuters. The charging is so slow that you can't take it very far. Unless there is good network of 3 phase chargers at petrol stations on Motorways this will concept will not be a success. People that own a car to get to work want to use it at weekends and holidays too.
But it would be interesting to see holiday cottages with charge points. Just like you get cottages with wifi now.
ID cards OK, database ridiculous
I thought the idea of having a cheaper option than a full passport is very good. Here in NL you can get an identity card (valid for the EU + whole slew of other European countries and Turkey) at about half the price of a full passport.
It was a major Labour fail that wanted this stupid database. For regular consumers the ID card would have been a great option for European travel. A credit card sized card is much more convenient than a full passport.
I agree with most of what your say.
11 years ago I bought a Sony 100Hz 28' widescreen CRT. It looks better with regular TV than almost any other screen I have seen. I remember that my friends told me I was mad spending that amount of money on a TV but it still seems a very good buy. Regular TV (analogue cable in Amsterdam) looks good but DVD's look even better, thanks to a rather good 7 year old Pioneer DVD-player and a very expensive Scart lead (RGB).
One of my main gripes with digital TV in NL is the fact that you have to buy or lease expensive energy wasting boxes to get the digital signal. The Dutch equivalent of Freeview is encoded. Unless the cable company switches off analogue I don't think we'll be upgrading anytime soon.
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