Differences between ICE and IC trains - Germany

Types of rail travel across Germany


brightondan
Hi fellow TTers,

I have to go to Hamburg and planned to take the ICE. However, the more convenient time I'd hoped to travel is only being offered with an IC. What's the major difference between the two?

I have looked here http://www.bahn.de/db_uk/view/trains/trains.shtml and understand in principle the difference between the two trains but the fact that both trains take the same journey time, in reality is there a big difference to look out for?

I appreciate any of your esteemed advice.

Cheers

Brightondan

P.S. It'll be bewteen Cologne and Hamburg
Janner67
Hi Brightondan,

Hopefully this answers your question:
ICE and IC
Basically, the IC trains are powered via a separate locomotive (push/pull setup), whilst the ICEs are these new-fangled all-in-one sleek-looking beasties.

Michael
Steven192
Intercity-Express (Wikipedia) for all your trainspotting needs
Janner67
Steven192, you forgot the link for the InterCity trains
InterCity
Michael
Small Town Boy
IC trains tend to travel longer distances than ICEs and in theory don't go as fast and stop more frequently. However, on some stretches there is little difference in time. Both are very comfortable and since the IC is generally a little cheaper, you may as well take that if it goes at a better time.
brightondan
Cheers to all of you,

Just to let you know I'm not lazy and found the info through internet searches (although didn't think of wikipedia ) about the physical differences.

I was more curious from the practical side of things to be honest (but appreciate all your comments).

@SmallTownBoy - basically I was hoping someone would say something along the lines of what you did. I'll just book the IC.

Once again, cheers to all.

Brightondan
kato
Practical side: On major routes, IC will be waaay overcrowded, and not bearable without a reservation. That includes Rhein-Ruhr / Hamburg.
gordonthemoron
also, you can take bikes on ICs but not on ICEs
brightondan
Thank you again :-)

Going on the IC, coming back on the ICE - both with reservations.

We shall see how it is!

All the best,

B'dan
Goodbye_BlueSky
Basically, the IC trains are powered via a separate locomotive (push/pull setup), whilst the ICEs are these new-fangled all-in-one sleek-looking beasties.
Not completely true though. The ICE1 and ICE2 were pulled by separate locomotives I guess.
Intercity-Express (Wikipedia)

Some differences between ICE and IC/EC are:

1. ICEs are capable of running much much faster than IC/EC (EuroCity), if the underlying bahn/rail-line allows it.
2. ICEs are I guess ca. 20% more expensive.
3. Seats in ICE are not designed to sleep on the seats, but in many IC/ECs you will have some kind of rest on the side of the seats. ICE seats are also very comfortable.
4. Some ECs travel long long way, like EC 171 from Berlin to Budapest, I dont think ICEs travel that type of distance. I think I have seen sleeping barths in some ECs, but that is out of question for ICE.
Darkknight
I dont think ICEs travel that type of distance.
There are several ICE's a day that do the Munich to Hamburg route, Which is about 100-130km shy of the Berlin-Budapest route.
Only the length of Germany is the deciding factor here.

And if your looking for a route that leaves Germany, then the Munich-Paris line is only 30km shy or 65km longer depending on the route taken.
Small Town Boy
Medium-term, ICs are dying out, slowly to be replaced by ICEs, according to Pro Bahn.

In zehn Jahren wird der heutige Intercity von deutschen Schienen verschwunden sein. Das pfeifen die Spatzen schon lange von den Bahnhofsdächern und jetzt hat es DB-Chef Hartmut Mehdorn bestätigt: Die DB wird neue Fahrzeuge nur für einen Teil des heutigen Intercity-Netzes beschaffen. Zwar hält das Verwirrspiel der DB an, ob es dann noch Züge gibt, auf denen "Intercity" steht, aber in der Sache ist die Richtung klar: In zehn Jahren werden rund zwei Drittel der Intercity-Züge verschwunden sein.
Intercity ohne Chance (PDF)
Goodbye_BlueSky
There are several ICE's a day that do the Munich to Hamburg route, Which is about 100-130km shy of the Berlin-Budapest route.
Only the length of Germany is the deciding factor here.
Or the EC 174/175, Hamburg-Budapest, which is >350km more than the Munich-Hamburg. But anyway, ECs are designed to travel through EU countries, and ICEs are more inside Germany still. But when you count the fact that top of the line ICEs can do ~400kmh, compared to old ECs at ~200kmh, I dont see why the ICEs wont replace the ECs in the long term, as long as there is enough finance..
Darkknight
Ok heres the details broken down a bit more... (Via the DB Website)

Berin-Budapest EC175 - Via Prague,Brno,Brataslava - 12hrs. (Aprox 1122km)
Munich-Hamburg ICE558 - Via Augsberg,Würzburg, Fulda, Hannover - 8hrs (Aprox. 856km)
Munich-Paris (ICE692/TGV9576) - Via Augsberg, Ulm, Stuttgart, Strasbourg - 6.25hrs (Aprox. 900km)
gordonthemoron
Medium-term, ICs are dying out, slowly to be replaced by ICEs, according to Pro Bahn.
That'll put paid to taking bikes on long distance trains, Nachtzug excepted. Mind, the nachtzugen seem a bit on the ancient side too
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