CSR Zhuzhou announced on 11 September that it is to supply 100km/h, 3.1MW, dual-voltage electric locomotives to South Africa. A figure of $US400 million was mentioned, with delivery starting as early as 2013. The four-axle units will be able to run on both 3kV DC and 25kV AC. supply. The company said it won the contract – its first for electric locos on the African continent – in competition with eight other bidders, both SA and international. A local content requirement of 60% was specified by Transnet. CSR, which says it has invested in 1,067mm gauge technology, hopes to establish a base in South Africa from which it can supply other potential customers in the region. It also has its eye on possible contracts with the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) for the supply of multiple-unit electric commuter stock.
South Africa’s newest electric locos currently in service, the class 19E, also have dual-voltage capability, as do the earlier class 14E.