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Rail Stories

The world's most livable cities rely on Bombardier FLEXITY trams for their urban mobility

In September of 2019, the Economist magazine released its annual report on the world’s most livable cities. The Economist Intelligent Unit’s yearly Global Liveability Ranking ranks the world’s top urban areas according to factors like stability, healthcare, education, environment and infrastructure. Once again, Melbourne and Vienna, both cities that rely on fleets of BOMBARDIER FLEXITY trams for their urban mobility, have been recognized as the world’s top-two best places to live. 

Vienna, Austria: 2019’s #1 most livable city

In the Austrian capital, Bombardier trams are as common as coffee, Schnitzel and Sachertorte. For many of the nearly two million people that call it home, the mobility that the world’s fifth-largest tram fleet provides has been central to making Vienna such a wonderful place to live.

Infrastructure and public transport solutions are key to making a city livable and we are proud of our nearly 100-year history of mobility in Vienna. We started delivering modern trams to Vienna in 1990, but our company’s contributions to the city’s urban transport can be traced back to 1970 when we acquired local manufacturer Lohnerwerke Wien, who began delivering trams to Vienna as far back as 1926. 

Bombardier has been right by Vienna’s side for much of the city’s modern history and has played a major role in the cultural and economic development that has helped earn its spot as the world’s number one most livable city.

Wiener Linien wanted a low-floor vehicle that offered easy access for everyone. Bombardier responded with the FLEXITY Vienna which boasts the industry’s lowest entrance for a tram with bogies.

FLEXITY Vienna: the next generation of urban mobility

The 34-metre long FLEXITY Vienna tram accommodates over 200 passengers, features wide passageways, spacious multipurpose areas and low entrances, setting new standards for passenger comfort.

In 2015, Wiener Linien decided to deepen its long-term relationship with Bombardier by choosing us to replace their classic tram fleet with the city’s next-generation mobility solution. Working together, the result was the highly innovative and tailor-made FLEXITY Vienna.

Locally built in Bombardier’s Vienna site, the first order for 119 trams from this framework contract included 24 years of Bombardier’s innovative FlexCare vehicle maintenance systemEasily integrated into existing Wiener Linien’s maintenance processes, FlexCare enables fleet operators to carry out maintenance at their own depots, using their own staff, but under the overall maintenance management responsibility of Bombardier.


This total services solution not only ensures planning reliability and cost certainty over the contract period, it means more frequent and reliable service for the 53% of the city who relies on public transport for their daily commutes.

Designed specifically to adapt to Vienna’s landscape and with excellent customer feedback, the new FLEXITY tram is already in daily operation with great success.

In 2017, we welcomed Wiener Linien and the City of Vienna to our Vienna manufacturing site for an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the production of their new trams.

Fast facts: FLEXITY Vienna tram

6 double-doors for easy access

211 passengers

2 designated wheelchair spaces

4 multipurpose areas

6 infotainment screens

2 route indicators

Melbourne, Australia: 2019’s 2nd most livable city

Melbourne held the Economist’s #1 most livable city title for three years, from 2015 to 2017, until being knocked off the top spot by the reigning champion Vienna in 2018. Home to nearly five million people spread across approximately 10,000 square kilometres, Melbourne can still boast strong urban mobility with the world’s largest tram network.

At 250 kilometres, the network and the trams that run on it, have been a key factor in balancing this massive city’s growth with its high-living standards, while meeting the needs of a passenger base that’s grown by 80 percent since 2006.


An icon of modernity, Melbourne’s FLEXITY E-Class trams have provided commuters with a safe, comfortable and reliable mobility solution.

FLEXITY Melbourne: backbone of the world's longest tram network

FLEXITY E-Class trams add to Melbourne’s liveability and symbolize the city’s efforts towards modernity and sustainability as the new vehicles will be equipped with latest innovative solutions to improve their environmental performance.

Melbourne’s tram network, operated by Yarra Trams, is the world’s largest. Two thirds of the trams have been supplied by Bombardier and they provide Melbourne’s commuters with a safe, comfortable and reliable mobility solution. 

The FLEXITY E-Class trams add to Melbourne’s liveability and symbolize the city’s efforts towards modernity and sustainability as the new vehicles will be equipped with latest innovative solutions to improve their environmental performance.

The new low-floor trams can also carry more than 200 passengers at a time and operate along some of the network’s busiest routes.

Made in Melbourne, for Melbourne

Bombardier has been proud to support Melbourne’s ambitious transport expansion plans for decades, working in partnership with Department of Transport in Victoria and Yarra Trams. To date, the world's second-most livable city has ordered 100 FLEXITY E-Class trams to help meet growing passenger numbers, highlighting the continued trust that Australia’s rail operators have in Bombardier. In addition, the iconic FLEXITY E-Class trams are manufactured locally at our state-of-the-art production site in Dandenong, Victoria. 

Most recently, Bombardier signed a contract with the Department of Transport in Victoria, Australia for an additional ten FLEXITY E-Class trams to bring a welcomed capacity boost to the city’s public transport network.

With over 50 percent local content, the FLEXITY E-Class trams are proudly produced at Bombardier’s state-of-the-art site in Dandenong, Victoria, Australia.

Fast facts: Melbourne's tram network

493 trams

250 km of track

24 routes

206 million passenger trips per year

1,763 stops