These are brand new, fully functional trains. Why are SWR removing them, when they can be used to increase capacity across the network? If you must remove them, I hope they'll be transferred to another operator, rather than being sent to scrap
Because of a number of reasons:
1. They have no toilets(SW Railway want a toilet on every train)
2. South Western Railway want a universal train fleet for suburban services to improve the reliability of their rolling stock so they are removing all of the fleet that are currently being used on suburban services(the 455, 456, 458 and 707s) and buying 701 Aventras.
I am sure that the 707s won't be scrapped as they are very new trains. Hopefully they go to another train operating company.
Personally, I also don't think the 707s should be removed from service either.
A bit odd as a concept getting rid of the 707's when they probably have many common components with the 450 and 444 fleets. Wouldn't it be cheaper to retrospectively fit them with toilets? I suspect a touch of "not ordered by us" applies with the 707's. Was there external pressure (TfL?) to order the 701's which I understand to be a DC version of the Crossrail 345 units?
I can see the sense in a target of a common fleet for suburban services, which is what existed with the 455 fleet from about 1987 until the 458's were reformed and refurbished a few years ago. As an aside didn't the SWR fleet of 455's recently win a "Golden Spanner" award for the most reliable ex BR emu fleet? Will the 701 fleet be as reliable if they last for 35 years?
( Sorry, I forgot, that will be the leasing company / A.N. Other TOC's to worry about in a few years time ..... )
I don't think they have many components in common with the older Desiros at all - they sound similar, but the Desiro City is a completely redesigned platform from a technical perspective.
The 701s will be substantially different to the 345s, in that the bodyshells will be 20m rather than 24m long, and the front end will be completely different. The interior will be far from identical as well (although the ironing board seats on look set to remain)
The 707s also have a sky high lease cost, so 701s would be cheaper in the long run to lease, a key decision in ordering 701s (you have to remember that one of the chiefs at SWT used to be a Siemens boss, perhaps why 707s were ordered in the first place over other products).