As part of the long-term fleet renewal programme for the North-South and East-West Lines (NSEWL), the Land Transport Authority (LTA) has purchased another 40 new trains from Bombardier Transportation for approximately $337.8 million.
These new trains will arrive in batches starting from 2024 to replace the 2nd generation (Siemens) and 3rd generation (Kawasaki-Nippon Sharyo) trains currently in service on the NSEWL. The new trains will be assembled at Bombardier’s facility in Changchun, China, with parts and features sourced from around the world, including Sweden, the United Kingdom, France and Germany.
Bombardier was previously awarded a contract in July 2018 to supply LTA with 66 new trains to replace the 1st generation (Kawasaki) trains that have served the NSEWL since it first opened in 1987. The latest batch of 40 trains uses the same design, and brings the total NSEWL trains supplied by Bombardier to 106. This move is expected to help LTA and SMRT reap significant economies of scale. For example, NSEWL rail engineers will be able to focus on being experts in one train type, instead of the three currently.
The new trains will also be equipped with an integrated suite of condition monitoring features that facilitate the timely detection of emerging faults. This will allow the rail operator to make more efficient use of maintenance resources to pre-emptively address potential faults before they affect commuter service. Initiatives such as these are central to efforts by LTA and the rail operators to continue delivering reliable train services, while managing costs.
When the new trains start service from 2024, commuters can also look forward to many commuter-friendly features such as more open spaces for strollers and wheelchair users, train-borne gap fillers for safer boarding and alighting, as well as refreshed LCD screens displaying train travel information. Please refer here for an artist’s impressions of the new trains.
Long Term Service Support
In tandem with LTA’s purchase of new trains, the NSEWL’s operator, SMRT Trains, will sign a long-term service support contract with Bombardier to cover all 106 new trains. Under this agreement, Bombardier will provide technical support and spare parts for train repairs and system upgrades or replacements for the first ten years, with the option for future contract extensions.
Giving Retired Trains a New Lease of Life
With the arrival of the new trains, the NSEWL’s older train fleets will be progressively withdrawn from passenger service. LTA is in discussions with various public and private sector organisations to repurpose some of the trains for education, heritage, training and even recreational purposes. Parties interested in acquiring these retired trains can email LTA at [email protected] for more information.