Russian Railways plans international expansion

Over the past 10 - 15 years, Russia has continued to be considered more and more a part of Europe.  It is by no means there yet, but recent announcements that show that the Russian rail operator is taking a large order of trains that can run both on Russian infrastructure, but also through Europe, is another big step in that process.

Russian Railways PresidentAccording to this article about the announcement, these new trains will be equipped with automatic trach gauge changeover systems which will allow the trains to carry on straight into the European Union, without having to stop and adjust the gauge at the Russian border.

This development will reduce the time taken to get between Moscow and Berlin to nine hours.  Although that doesn't sound like a particularly attractive length of time, given that Google estimates it would take 24 hours to drive that trip, it's pretty impressive.  Unfortunately the trains won't be delivered until 2014, but it is an exciting prospect nonetheless.