The first TGV prototype at a time when it was still a test bed for the French high speed. It was a turbotrain but the decision had been made to electrify the first high speed line (Paris-Lyon). So the train was used for testing new pantograph designs, but the power to move the train for these tests was still coming from the gas turbine. The train was delivered in April 1972 and the tests with its own turbines lasted until June 1978 when the first electric “Sud-Est” TGVs were delivered.
The builders’ plate shows 4 manufacturers :
- ALSTHOM with an “H” as it was still called at the time
- Turbomeca, who provided the four Turmo III G2 gas turbines (two in each power car)
The two power cars are preserved as monuments in Belfort and Bischeim (France). Unfortunately they have been altered. This view of the TDu 002 engine in Belfort shows that it was painted in orange instead of the bright red of the original livery, and the power trucks are gone. The shell of the TGV001 now sits on passenger car trucks!