Siemens Mobility has been awarded a €650 million contract in Canada to design and build the next generation of VIA Rail Canada’s trainsets.
This includes 32 bi-directional trainsets, with a supplemental 15-year service agreement for VIA Rail, Canada’s government-owned intercity transportation operator. The new trainsets will service passengers on VIA’s busiest route, the Quebec City – Windsor Corridor, which connects Canada’s two largest cities, Toronto and Montreal, and spans more than 2,200 kilometers in a northeast-southwest direction. The line carried more than 4.5 million passengers in 2018, representing an increase of more than 30 percent over the past four years. The trainsets will ensure the highest level of safety while also significantly enhancing the passenger experience, with excellent ride quality including more comfortable seats, quieter cars, modern climate control and a high-performance passenger Wi-Fi and digital information system. Delivery of the trainsets will begin in 2021 and passenger service in 2022.
“As we are initiating the gradual withdrawal of the current fleet, the timely delivery of the new fleet will allow VIA Rail to maintain the current levels of service in the Québec-City Windsor Corridor, while significantly improving the quality of its passenger experience. We thank the Government of Canada for their trust in VIA Rail and for this historic investment in its sustainable future,” said Yves-Desjardins-Siciliano, President and CEO, VIA Rail Canada.
“We’re proud to provide VIA Rail’s next generation of trainsets, which will deliver the best travel experience for its riders. Siemens Mobility is committed to delivering intelligent trains that enhance passenger experience, increase value sustainably over their lifecycle and improve availability,” said Sabrina Soussan CEO, Siemens Mobility.
The 32 trainsets will be powered by the popular Charger locomotives, one of the most fuel-efficient diesel-electric locomotives in the market today. The passenger cars come with a high level of comfort, air-suspension, state of the art interior design, a full range of modern passenger amenities, the latest in food service equipment and will feature Enhanced Universal Accessibility, offering multiple accommodations for wheelchairs and other mobility devices. The trainsets will be manufactured in Siemens Mobility’s North American Manufacturing Headquarters for Rolling Stock located in Sacramento, California. Siemens Mobility aims to include Canadian content of more than 20 percent of supplies and service.
More than 70 Siemens Mobility Charger locomotives are successfully operating across North America transporting passengers and traveling nearly 5 million kilometers per year.
VIA Rail operates on a 12,500-kilometer rail network with 121 stations, 73 locomotives and 428 train cars. It transports more than 4.8 million passengers annually, covering 1.5 billion kilometers.