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Prague: Tatra T6 operation is coming to an end

Double traction 8639-8640 on line 12 next to Geologicka | © Martin Harák

In the 1990s, Prague Transport Authority (DPP) ordered a total of 150 Tatra T6A5 trams in order to modernize its aging fleet, which mainly composed of Tatra T3. They were delivered in 1995, 1996 and 1997 in three series and numbered 8601 to 8750. Before delivery, tests with T6 models had been conducted on the Prague tramway network, which were meant for Dresden and Bratislava.

All T6 trams delivered in 1995 have a 1 + 1 seating arrangement, while the others have a 1 +2 interior design. In Prague, T6A5 trams are used both individually and in coupled pairs. Since both vehicles are electrically connected while coupled, only one of the pantographs is connected to the overhead – typically, the one on the roof of the first vehicle. It is worth mentioning that so-called “stress tests” were conducted on the tram line to Barrandov on November 1, 2003, during which three three-car trains of T6A5 were operating together. In 1998, the only vehicle with a slightly different design of type T6A5.3 started operation numbered 8600. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by an accident in 2012. Car 8671 was also involved in a traffic accident in September 2008 and badly damaged so that it was scrapped one year later. It was the first T6A5 to be permanently out of service in the Czech Republic.

8600+8601 – Branik – September 2004 | © Martin Harák

No. 8701 -April 2001 | © Dirk Budach

8702 – Barrandovu – October 2005 | © Martin Harák


As soon as with the delivery of new 15T low-floor trams in the year 2015, the systematic decommissioning of Prague’s Tatra T6 began. The first tramcar that was shut down was number 8605. A year later, 20 retired Prague T6s were sold on to Sofia (Bulgaria). Since 2016, additionalsales of vehicles took place, for example to the Ukrainian cities of Kiev and Kharkiv (Kharkov) as well as to the Czech city of Brno, see also: https://www.urban-transport-magazine.com/en/new-tatras-in-brno/

Several other cars are stored as out of service in several of DPP Prague’s depots. In May 2020, only 10 T6 are still running, but their end of service is already planned for the end of 2020. Going forward, only tram 8702 will remain operational as part of Prague’s fleet of historical tramway at the DPP local transport museum Střešovice. Of the 10 vehicles still in regular service, no. 8611, 8629, 8637, 8658, 8716, 8739, 8747, 8747, 8748 and 8750 are usually operating from Motol depot on route 32 Hlubočepy – Sídliště. No. 8744 operates on different lines from Žižkov depot. DPP long-term plan foresees to keep no. 8601 and 8750 in the fleet for “nostalgic operations”. No. 8601 is currently stored at Žižkov depot awaiting repairs.

8651+8652+8653+8654 – February 2011 | © Martin Harák

8659+8660 – Zelivskeho – April 2012 | © Martin Harák

8739 – Svermuv – February 2011 | © Martin Harák

8748 – Park kultury – 29 December 2018 | © Martin Harák

Tatra T6 No. 8647+8648 and Tatra KT8 No. 9042 – Jindrisska – 22 April 2005 | © Martin Harák

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