Amtrak’s new train fleet promises all the bells, whistles. Here’s what riders can expect.
By Tom Krisher, Associated Press, Updated July 14th, 2021
DETROIT — Amtrak is betting big on a return of ridership. The nation’s passenger railroad wants to replace its nearly half-century-old fleet with state-of-the-art trains that can operate on electricity or diesel fuel.
It plans to spend $7.3 billion to buy 83 trains made by Siemens, with options to buy more if ridership increases. Funding must still be approved by Congress, but William Flynn, Amtrak’s CEO, says he’s confident it will happen.
If it doesn’t, then Amtrak will finance the trains and repay its debt with money from state train services and passenger fares.
The more efficient trains, which will be built in California, are scheduled to start running in 2024. They will have more comfortable seating, better ventilation systems, power outlets and USB ports, Wi-Fi and panoramic windows. Many can run on either diesel fuel or battery power when needed.