Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Sorry for the late reply, was preoccupied in another thread.

Trains and railways are strongly connected, so it's better to take a system view.

There are only three all-round producers (meaning they make everything): German Siemens, French Alstom and Canadian Bombardier. Though, most of the latter's capacities are in Europe, from Britain to Poland, and most of it is former ADtranz, which itself is a more recent merger of ABB and Daimler-Benz's railway holdings, the latter chiefly AEG.

In Japan, trains were usually produced by consortia of multiple companies (like in Germany 20 years ago), they only now shift to single-hand production. But the two chief producers who lead consortia are Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Hitachi.

In North America, there is Bombardier, locomotive producers EMD (originally part of GM, now owned by equities) and as you say GE. Other large players are Greenbrier is a freight railcar giant, and Caterpillar is a producer of diesel engines that in the rail sector is a global giant, supplying locomotive factories from China to Europe.

China should also be taken into account in a few years, they already export to the Third World and now learn European technology. Big names are Datong and Sifang Locomotive Works, there are a lot of others.

Back in Europe, beyond Skoda, smaller producers of (not just) trains include Talgo in Spain, Ansaldo-Breda in Italy, and a lot of others (there are a number in Poland, but I just can't memorize their names). Transmash[elektro?] is a Russian holding. Vossloh is an upstart diesel locomotive factory in Germany (they bought an existing factory in Kiel but ran it up so well they practically became market leaders). German Knorr-Bremse is not the only but the defining company in brakes (originally for trains, now for everything). Plasser & Theurer specialise in work vehicles.

Due to the integrated nature of railways, it happened a lot of times that maintenance depots started to produce something new on their own or in cooperation with 'proper' producers. There are a lot of these around.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Nov 29th, 2006 at 02:32:18 PM EST
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