Main > Reference > Finland > Electric Multiple Units > Sm3


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    > Sm3 "Pendo"
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Sm3 "Pendo" High Speed EMUs

The Sm3 Pendolinos form the backbone of VR-Yhtyma long distance high speed traffic. 18 units travel lengthy distances daily in Finland, even if the temperatures are well on the freezing side and there is lots of snow. The maintenance of the Sm3 units by the VR-Yhtyma is the best in the world so a working model has been able to form to keep the units challenging technology working, unlike in many other countries in Europe. This of course does not fix the design mistake by the manufacturer Alstom/Fiat, that the trains have a tendency to catch underfloor fires. Every time these happed, the fire brigades in Finland have expressed their grave concern in the main national news media. While similar Pendolinos in Switzerland are retired earliest possible, in Finland the train operator VR-Yhtyma has to rely on the proper maintenance and hope for as few fires as possible.

VR-Yhtyma Sm3 double units xx green in Kerava, Finland
Picture above: The double green Pendolino unit is approaching Kerava in the harsh winter weather. See the flying snow around the train. Still the properly maintained technology works most fo the time well.

-- Click any picture to see a larger version of it! --

Technical Specifications *

Roster pictures: * 7x01 *
7x02 * 7x11 *

Created for by John McKey and Andreas Ehnberg. Pictures by Stanislav Voronin, Ilkka Siissalo, Hannu Peltola, Andreas Ehnberg and John McKey.

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Also in this section:
An IC2 fo VR pulled by Swiss type Sr2 has just left Pasila, Helsinki on it's way to Turku in the west

Finnish Railroads Main Page, a great place to start browsing this section.

Junakalusto Class Sm5 on test drive meets Sm4 of VR-Yhtyma in Kerava, just outside Helsinki, Finland
Finnish railroad organizations and railroad operators have their own pages, as well as the largest operator VR-Yhtyma and a newcomer to the field Junakalusto.

While much of the passenger traffic concentrates around the capital Helsinki, you might be interested in the roster pictures of VR-Yhtyma, Junakalusto and the city of Helsinki operator HKL. HKL operates the metro and narrow gauge trams

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  Sm3 "Pendo" of VR-Yhtymä, Technical Specifications

Above: A double class Sm3 Pendolino S220 unit is seen tilting slightly in Korso, Vantaa, Finland. The Finnish version of this 400 series looking train has 6 coaches per unit. Picture by Stanislav Voronin.

VR-Yhtyma Pendolino and IC2 train meet at Kytomaa, near Kerava junction in Kerava, Finland
Above the red Pendolino S220 unit is taking the curve at Kytömaa, just north of Kerava junction. In the background the IC2 train is accelerating to the high speed track towards Lahti. Picture by Stanislav Voronin.

The future is green, even for Pendolinos. Below the first green unit seen in the new color sceme hiding at Turku service facilities before officially entering the service. Even the salmon is green at the Pendolino restaurant car (for real...)! Picture by John McKey 2010.

A green Pendolino nose at Turku service facilities before the train was unveiled, Turku, Finland

The Sm3 Pendolino of VR-Yhtyma started the new era of high speed train tavel in Finland. With scarce resources for building the high speed track, the tilting train solution has proved success economically and in some aspects also technically. Finland also has much younger and more developed class Sm6 Allegro Pendolinos on its networks for International traffic.

There were initially strong doubts about the tilting Pendolino operations in the harsh winter climate, but the operator has been able to solve many problems. The current main problems are that of the trains have more common than normal tendency to catch underfloor fires (usually no danger to customers), the under floor compartments flooding with snow and ice in case of motor malfunction and braking cardan axles causing much havoc under the trains. You add the fact that due to the manufacturer initially saved money on electronics all the pulling wheels on half train sets have to be of exact same size, these all add cost to the train operation. No wonder the Swiss SBB has expressed they wish to retire their very similar fleet of similar Pendolinos earliest possible in 2014. If the VR trains could be modernized to same level as the Sm6 Allegro Pendolinos, all these problems would be solved.

Technical details for Pendolino S220
-> Builder: Alstom in Italy (a former Fiat Ferroviaria model), assembeld by
      Transtech in Finland
-> Built in: 1995 - 2006 in two batches
-> Owner and operator: VR-Yhtymä 
-> Maintenance by: VR-Yhtymä
-> Used for: Intercity / long distance high speed traffic

-> Units built: 18 sets, each consisting of 6 modules 
-> Units in use: 18 (most of the time)   
-> Maximum design speed: 220 km/h (137 mph)
-> Power: 4000 kW (8 x 500 kW) (5438 Hp)
-> Power distribution: (1A)'(A1)'+(1A)'(A1)'+2'2'+2'2'+(1A)'(A1)'+(1A)'(A1)'
-> Power to track: 156 kN (a very low figure for this power)
-> Electricity: 25 kV 50 Hz

-> Unit numbers:  7101...7601 - 7118...7618

-> Electrical systems: Asynchronous 

-> Trailers: 6, IM+CM+TTC+TT+CM+IM
    - 309 seats
- class : 1st class, xx seats, 2 + 1 seating, toilet  

-> Unit length: 158,9 m (with 6 cars)
-- End coaches: 27,65 m
-- Middle coaches: 25,9 m
-> Height: 4,1 m 
-> Width 3,2 m
-> Windfactor:  

-> Weight: 328 metric tons
-> Power to weight ratio: 12,2
-> Max. axle weight: 15,6 tons

-> Couplers: Scharfenberg at the ends
-> Nicknamed: Pendo

Easy recognition guide

  • The white base with a broad red or soon green stripe and seen inside Finnish territory gives no room for no error.  For curiosity, the salmon on restaurant car is green!
  • The other existing Pendolino has curvy stripes, silver and large blue Allegro  text on it.


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  Sm3 "Pendo" unit 7x01 of VR-Yhtymä
VR-Yhtyma Sr2 number 3231 and Sm3 unit 7301 at Helsinki Main, Finland

Picture: The salad gree unit 7x01 at Helsinki main western tracks ready to be on the way to Turku, in the Southwestern Finland.

Picture by Andreas Ehnberg.

-- Click any picture to see a larger version of it! --






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  Sm3 "Pendo" unit 7x02 of VR-Yhtymä
VR-Yhtyma Sm3 unit 2 green in Kerava, Finland

Sporting a quickly replaced coupler hatch cover to keep the snow and ice from building in the compartment the unit 02 is seen passing Kerava southwards towards a stop in Tikkurila before it's destination in Helsinki. As with any other high speed train types, Sm3 have also suffered from coupler compartment door problems.

Picture by Stanislav Voronin.

-- Click any picture to see a larger version of it! --






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  Sm3 "Pendo" unit 7x11 of VR-Yhtymä
VR-Yhtyma Sm3 unit 11 leaving Ilmala service tracks, Helsinki, Finland

The Sm3 "Pendo" quite at home in the snowy environment is leaving the service tracks in Ilmala after a quick routine cleaning.

Picture by John McKey.


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Main > Reference > Finland > Electric Multiple Units > Sm3
© Railroad Reference 2004 - 2011   -   Created 25.6.2011 John McKey, updated 23.11.2011