Amtrak awarded a $1.8 billion deal to Alstom to supply new trains

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US rail operator Amtrak on Friday awarded a $1.8 billion deal to French manufacturer Alstom to supply new trains for its key Acela service between Washington, New York, and Boston, reports BSS.

The landmark deal for 28 new passenger trains will boost Amtrak’s speed and capacity along its most heavily used and profitable route from 2021. A large part of the manufacturing will be done in the United States, the companies said.

The trains will carry more than 400 passengers, up 35 percent over the existing Acela northeastern corridor express service, with a maximum speed of 300 kilometers per hour (180 miles per hour), though normal speeds will be near 260 kilometers an hour.

US rail operator Amtrak awarded a $1.8 billion deal to France's high-speed train builder Alstom Friday to supply new trains for its key Acela service between Washington, New York and Boston

US rail operator Amtrak awarded a $1.8 billion deal to France’s high-speed train builder Alstom on Friday to supply new trains for its key Acela service between Washington, New York, and Boston

In the deal, Alstom, which makes France’s famed TGV trains, agreed to manufacture a large part of the new equipment for Amtrak, dubbed its Avelia Liberty line, at its plant in Hornell, New York.

The new trains, which will also serve Baltimore, Philadelphia and other key cities on the route, will be able to run faster than current trains in part due to the use of Alstom’s Tiltronix system allowing the trains to lean more deeply into curves, avoiding sharp slowdowns.

“Amtrak is taking the necessary actions to keep our customers, the Northeast region and the American economy moving forward,” said Amtrak president and chief executive Joe Boardman.

“These trainsets and the modernization and improvement of infrastructure will provide our customers with the mobility and experience of the future,” he said.

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