From the ground to the roof, DoSto cars receive the utmost care

CFL Group
// 17 November 2022

On the rails since 2005, the CFL’s DoSto cars benefit from regular, high-tech maintenance carried out by dedicated experts. A visit to the workshop also serves to preserve the look of this robust and reliable equipment.

Millions of kilometres on the clock and always at the cutting edge. Used daily on the CFL lines, the “DoSto” cars (Doppelstockwagen – double-decker reversible coaches) regularly make a diversion to the central workshop for maintenance and other upgrades.

In addition to the CFL’s non-negotiable priority of safety, for its customers and staff, the inspection of the rolling stock and the installation of new equipment are an integral part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy that aims for a more responsible and sustainable mobility.

As explained in a previous article published on, the challenge is twofold: save resources (for example, by replacing neon lights with LEDs) and optimise the lifetime of this rolling stock, which is particularly solicited due to the exponential increase in rail traffic.

Protection through foiling

The attention drawn to the DoSto coaches is shown both inside and outside. Regarding the latter application of protective foils on the roof, where the color is particularly exposed to the weather and temperature fluctuations comes into play.

“The installation of this protection is being carried out by our industrial supplier, began last year and will continue in 2023,” explains Guillaume, project manager at CFL for the DoSto upgrade. “We are planning the operation gradually, depending on the condition of the color on the roof of each coach, which inspect visually on a regular basis.”

Some 100m2 of recyclable plastic film is unrolled and placed manually per DoSto over three days.

“Once installed, the plastic film is hardly visible because it consists of a main layer printed in the burgundy colour of the DoSto,” adds Guillaume. “This layer, which is in contact with the roof, is itself protected by a transparent UV protection film.

From low to high maintenance

42 DoSto coaches have already been fitted with this cover. This operation is done in parallel with the planned maintenance sessions in order to combine planned works and to make them available to our customers as soon as possible.

“We organise three types of maintenance, all of which are managed via a computer system so that we can intervene at the right time, depending on the milage of each car,” adds Guillaume. “The small service is carried out every 15,000 kilometres, the large service every 150,000 kilometres with air conditioning revision and the very large service every 8 years, during which the coaches are dismantled and revised from top to bottom.”

Careful coordination is therefore required to carry out this maintenance and to ensure that the coaches are back on the railway in good time.

This coordination is possible thanks to the know-how of a team of some 40 employees working in three shifts, who began installing a passenger counting system at the entrance doors last spring.

From the ground to the roof, these DoSto experts work behind the scenes to ensure the smooth operation of this equipment, which is essential to the mobility of CFL customers.

The DoSto in 5 figures

4.631 metres: their height

160 km/h: their maximum speed

133: the number of seats in a double-decker, 2nd class coach

50 tonnes: the weight of a double-deck coach, 1st and 2nd class

26.80 metres: the length of an intermediate double-deck coach

CFL Group