Amtrak has announced a $2 billion deal with Alstom to build its fleet of new high-speed trains for the Northeast Corridor (NEC) between Boston and Washington.
The majority of the 28 articulated trains will be manufactured in the US at Alstom’s existing site in Hornell, New York.
Capable of speeds of up to 300 km/h, the trains will replace the Acela fleet, which has been in service since 2000. Initially the trains will be limited to 257 km/h due to the constraints of the NEC infrastructure.
The trains, which will utilise Alstom’s Tiltronix tilting technology, will be made up of a single “compact” power car and nine passenger cars. Alstom has said a further three cars could be added if needed.
Named the Avelia Liberty, the new trains will provide 33 per cent more capacity than the Acela units when they go into service in 2021.
Amtrak president and chief executive Joe Boardman said: “Amtrak is taking the necessary actions to keep our customers, the Northeast region and the American economy moving forward.
“These trainsets and the modernization and improvement of infrastructure will provide our customers with the mobility and experience of the future.”
Amtrak has also contracted Alstom to maintain the new trains. Depots in Boston, New York and Washington will provide support and repair services to the fleet for 15 years, with an option to extend the contract for a further 15 years.