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Motor cars type Reggio Emilia

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Reggio Emilia 85 with Costamasnaga trailer 177 is coming out of the Deposito Varedo on the Milano – Limbiate line during a special trip organized by Associazione Culturale Trasporti on May 28th 2000. Photo © Alessio Pedretti.

The motor cars type Reggio Emilia, or simply Reggio, were built by Reggiane (and this explains its name) with TIBB electric equipment in 1928 in 8 units and were a modern potentiated version of Desio cars. They were fitted to run under 600 V of the urban system and most of the interurban tramways as well under 1200 V of the lines to Vimercate, Trezzo and Cassano (Adda lines) on which these cars operated. For this purpose, cars were equipped with two trolley poles for 600 V and with a single pantograph for 1200 V. Only car 88 wasn't fitted to run under 1200 V and was used on Brianza lines. At first the Reggio wore the white STEL livery, replaced by the light and dark green colours after the passage of the interurban tramways to ATM in 1937.

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Reggio 87, now set aside in the Deposito Desio and not in good condition (all the inner furniture was removed), is the only unit still wearing the old light and dark green livery. October 7th 2001.

In the '60s and '70s all Reggio Emilia were gradually moved on Brianza lines to Limbiate and Carate, as Adda lines were operated mostly by the new Bloccati series 500 and 800 and later closed or absorbed by metro M2. In Brianza the pantograph and the devices for 1200 V were not necessary, so they were removed. In 1986 the pantograph was resumed (this time two for each car) replacing the trolley pole. In the same years all Reggio Emilia but 87 and 88 were repainted in orange, while car 86 was scrapped (car 91 was already demolished in the '60).

On December 11th 2000 car 88, one of the two green units, was scrapped, so at present only five units survive (sitaution in November 2003):

Units 85-87, 89-92 in the '60s
Units 85, 90, 92 today
Unit 87 today


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The snow-plough car 89 in the Deposito Desio on October 7th 2001.

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Another view of the special train on May 28th 2000 during the runaround shunt at Limbiate Ospedale. Photo © Alessio Pedretti.

Reggio Emilia 90 and 92 are used on the heavy morning and evening trains with up to four trailers, as trains made of a Bloccato with a trailer cannot be shunted in the little terminus of Milano Affori. Unit 85 is seldom used.

Reggio Emilia tecnical characteristics
Year 1928
Original amount 8
Present amount 5
Classification 85-92
Length 13 560 mm
Width 2 250 mm
Mass 28 000 kg
Maximum speed 65 km/h
Body builder Reggiane
Bogie builder TIBB
Axles 4
Brake Pneumatic
Electric equipment builder TIBB
Engine builder TIBB
Engine amount 4
Total power 302 kW


© 2003 Ivan Furlanis
Last changes: December 2003