US-based passenger railroad firm Amtrak has commenced the process of replacing railcars on 14 overnight routes with new train cars.
The company has already received ideas from at least ten builders to provide the new railcars, which will be plying on diverse routes, Auto Train, California Zephyr, Coast Starlight, among others.
Last month, Amtrak issued a request for information for the supply of its new fleet.
Through the bid, the company sought for replacement ideas for its overnight railcars that comprise Superliner I & II, Viewliner I & II and Amfleet II trains.
Amtrak board chair Tony Coscia said: “Purchasing new long distance train cars will allow Amtrak to upgrade and modernise the iconic and vital overnight services that link our nation’s major regions.
“We are looking for new trains that improve safety, reliability, accessibility, and efficiency while offering the features our customers believe are most important to modernising overnight train travel for the 21st century.”
Amtrak intends to issue a formal procurement request for its upgraded fleet later this year.
The firm will receive funding under the US Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act for its future fleets.
Coscia added: “This represents the final phase in our long-term plan to replace our trains—beginning with new Acela equipment and continuing with the Amtrak Airo trains announced last month.
“We believe in the future of our Long Distance service and we look forward to enhancing the customer experience across the Amtrak network, and further supporting US manufacturing.”
Amtrak’s fuel-efficient Airo trains are expected to start operations in 2026.
The firm’s current long-distance fleet, which includes more than 800 cars, has been delivered over a period of 40 years. The first car began its opinations in 1979.
Majority of the equipment in the existing fleet will near service life after ten years, stated Amtrak.