The Siemens S70 or Avanto is a low-floor light rail vehicle (LRV) or tram manufactured by Siemens AG. In the United States, Siemens refers to this model only as the S70, while the Avanto name is used in Europe.
The S70 is in use, or on order, by several light rail systems in the United States.
In Europe, Siemens Combino and Avenio models are the preferred offerings for purely light rail or tramway systems, and the Avanto is principally sold to tram-train systems which, in whole or part, share their tracks with heavy rail trains. Here its principal competitors are Bombardier’s Flexity Link tram-train and Alstom’s Citadis Regio-Citadis/Citadis-Dualis tram-train variants. To date, the Avanto has been sold to two tram-train operations in France.
Size and configuration 
The S70/Avanto has a modular design, and can be built in a number of different sizes and configurations.
To date, all S70s delivered in North America have had a length between 91 and 96 feet (27.7 and 29.3 m), but the 77 cars currently on order by Salt Lake City's TRAX system and the 57 cars on order for the San Diego Trolley will be only 81 feet (25 m) long. The Avantos built for France have a length of 36.68 m (120.3 ft).
While most S70 vehicles are double-ended, with operating controls at both ends, and double sided (doors on both sides), the 22 cars in service on Portland's MAX system are single-ended, with operating cabs at only one end of each car. However, they have doors on both sides, and in service they always operate in pairs, coupled back-to-back, so that each consist has operating cabs at both ends.
The S70/Avanto can be configured to operated off various combinations of power supply. The Avantos ordered for France are capable of operating off 750 V DC, when running on tram or light rail tracks, and off 25 kV AC, when running on main line tracks.
Usage and current orders 
United States 
- Houston METRORail, Texas: 18 units purchased, with delivery complete in late 2004. 19 additional units on order, procured using Salt Lake City options, to be delivered starting in late 2012. The original cars are the long variant; the new cars are the shorter variant as used in Salt Lake.
- Metro Transit Minneapolis, Minnesota: 41 purchased with 58 options, delivery to begin in 2012.
- San Diego Trolley, California: 11 92 feet (28 m) units purchased in first order, with delivery complete in July 2005. A second order, for 57 81 feet (24.7 m) cars, was placed in October 2009, and all vehicles are projected to be in service by 2013.
- LYNX Blue Line (CATS), Charlotte, North Carolina, United States: 16 units purchased, in service since November 2007. Four additional units purchased in 2008 and in service by March 2010 to keep up with higher than expected ridership.
- MAX, Portland, Oregon: 22 units purchased. Order for 21 cars announced on May 11, 2006; later expanded by one car. Entered service starting in August 2009. Order placed 2012 for another 18 cars.
- The Tide Light Rail, Norfolk, Virginia: 9 cars, ordered in 2007. First cars delivered October 2009. Entered service with the opening of the Norfolk system, in 2011.
- Utah Transit Authority, Salt Lake City, Utah: 77 units ordered;in service since August 7, 2011. The order also includes an option for 180 additional cars.
- Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, Atlanta, Georgia: 4 cars, ordered in 2011. In May 2011 Siemens announced that it had won the $17.2 million contract to build the four streetcars that will run on the new Downtown Loop line. According to Siemens, the first vehicle was expected to be delivered in September 2012. They would be built in Sacramento but with major components, including the propulsion system, assembled at Siemens' plant in Alpharetta, Metro Atlanta.
- SNCF, Paris region: 25 tram-train units purchased. Entered service starting on November 18, 2006, with the opening of new route T4, between Aulnay-sous-Bois and Bondy. The S70 model used here is known as the Avanto.
- Mulhouse tramway, Mulhouse: 12 tram-train cars delivered, for use on an SNCF line from Mulhouse to Thann, Haut-Rhin. First unit delivered on November 6, 2009.
An order for 22 S70 cars, placed in 2006 by Ottawa, Ontario for a planned expansion of its O-Train system, was later cancelled. Political problems had resulted in cancellation of the entire expansion project, which in turn led to lawsuits by Siemens and other contractors against the City of Ottawa.
See also 
- Light rail in North America
- Siemens–Duewag U2
- Siemens SD-400
- Siemens SD-460
- Siemens SD-100 and SD-160
- "Vehicles Lines". Siemens. Retrieved 2011-05-21.
- Haydock, David (April 2011). "France's first real tram train". Today's Railways (Platform 5 Publishing Ltd). pp. 37–40.
- "Siemens Breaks Its Own Record for Largest Light Rail Vehicle Order: Salt Lake City Orders 77 S70 LRVs Valued at Over $277M" (Press release). Siemens. 2008-05-15. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- San Diego Metropolitan Transit System. "Trolley Renewal Project". San Diego Metropolitan Transit System. Retrieved 2010-10-27.
- Morgan, Steve. "Expansion for Portland's MAX: New routes and equipment", pp. 38-40. Passenger Train Journal, "2010:1" issue (1st quarter, 2010). White River Productions.
- "Siemens wins San Diego light rail contract". Metro Magazine. 2009-10-07. Retrieved 2011-10-23.
- "Siemens announces biggest US light rail order". Railway Gazette International. 2008-05-15. Retrieved 2008-05-16.
- "Siemens Lands $75M Portland Rail Contract". Business Wire via Mass Transit magazine. 2006-05-12. Retrieved 2009-11-08.
- Redden, Jim (August 6, 2009). "TriMet puts new light-rail cars on track". Portland Tribune. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
- Rose, Joseph (July 31, 2012). "TriMet asks cramped MAX riders to help design next-generation train's seating". The Oregonian. Retrieved December 27, 2012.
- Messina, Debbie (2009-10-07). "Light-rail cars arrive in Norfolk". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved 2009-11-08.
- Atlanta orders Siemens Avanto [sic] streetcars Railway Gazette International. May 20, 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- Thomas Whaeatley, "Downtown streetcar to be built by Siemens", Creative Loafing, May 22, 2011
- Tramways & Urban Transit, February 2007, p. 64. Light Rail Transit Association (UK).
- "Siemens tram-train arrives in Mulhouse". Tramways & Urban Transit, January 2010, p. 27. Light Rail Transit Association (UK).
- Jake, Rupert (2007-09-19). "City slapped with another light-rail lawsuit". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 2009-11-08.