The Integral Coach Factory (ICF) of the Indian Railways manufactured 301 coaches in February, taking the total for this fiscal to 2,919. This puts it among the largest railcar builders in the world, senior railway officials claimed on Wednesday.
Top Chinese manufacturers, sources say, produce around 2,600 coaches a year.
The total production at ICF, Chennai, which churned out India’s fastest train — the Vande Bharat Express , stood at 2,919 (April-February) coaches against 2,085 in the corresponding period last year, a 40% increase in production. The factory had produced 1,976 coaches during the same period in 2017.
“The rate at which ICF is producing the coaches, it will certainly end up at over 3,200 this (financial) year. This decidedly makes it the largest railcar builder in the world and bigger than the remaining five of India put together,” said a senior official.
ICF has been given orders for manufacturing 44 more Vande Bharat Express trainsets by the railways, of which the first rake is under production. The balance 43 trainsets are planned to be rolled out of ICF in phases during the next three production years.
The Rae Bareli-based Modern Coach Factory too has ramped up production and has produced 143 coaches in February and a cumulative total of 1,283 coaches this year against 586 coaches in the same period last year, an increase of 118%, the official said.
The factory is well on its way to achieve a production level of 1,422 this year, double that of last year’s 711, the official said.