It will be more than a year before the new fleet of high-speed Acela trains go into service, but the first of the 28 in production is already out for a test run.
The new Acela fleet is in production at Alstom’s facility in Hornell, New York. The first train will be moving to Pueblo, Colorado, in mid-February for further testing.
Amtrak has released this video of it on tracks at Alstom’s facility.
The new Acela trains will carry up to 386 passengers, a 30% increase over current Acela train cars.
They will also initially have a top speed of 160 mph, though they will be capable of reaching up to 186 mph.
Besides capacity and speed, other improvements include onboard information systems, larger restrooms and streamlined overhead luggage compartments.
Current Acela service has grown from 2.5 million passengers in 2002 to 3.4 million passengers in 2018.
The new Acela trains are part of Amtrak’s $2.45 billion upgrades on the Northeast Corridor, which also includes the modernization of its passenger concourse at Union Station, with a goal of tripling passenger capacity over the next 20 years.
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