The Vivalto is the new train that is intended for regional lines that operate at high frequency. In service since 2005 it is comprised of double-decker cars, a solution that Trenitalia has been using for almost 30 years. Cars include a 1st-Class carriage and the (*)lead car for the train engineer. Usually the train is powered by an E-464 locomotive, which has become the Trenitalia standard for regional trains.
The bicycle compartment is located in the lead car right behind the cabin for the train engineer. Access therefore can be at one of two extremes of the train; unfortunately in the train station it is never indicated beforehand if this car will be at the tail end or the front of the train; the cyclist, when the train arrives, needs to observe and determine if the engineer’s car is at the front or at the tail. To avoid racing franticly one should place oneself in the middle of the platform and observe carefully whether the arriving train has the engineer’s car or the locomotive at the front.
For hanging bikes a complex and inconvenient system was devised: the bicycle is first placed vertically with the wheels in the corresponding guides and then fastened to the wall by tightening a clamp, fastened at the end of the metal arm, to the diagonal tube of the bike, not an easy operation for a human being with only two arms. One wonders if those who devised the system have ever tried to use it in practice. A much simpler and more usable solution would have been the classic hook on the ceiling. The good news is that in later-model Vivalto cars, introduced in 2012, they adopted this simpler solution.
Still, the Vivalto cars are very comfortable and come equipped with electrical outlets for laptops and recharging mobile phones.
This type of train will place the locomotive at either the front or back of the train depending on which direction it is going. The train engineer operates the train from either the locomotive or a special lead car that has a cabin for the engineer.X