MONTREAL – The city’s long-awaited new metro cars, dubbed the AZUR, were unveiled Monday morning in the maintenance garage.
The new cars will eventually replace the 468 MC63s that have been rolling on the metro tracks for almost 50 years.
The first new trains are expected to be introduced on the Orange Line by the end of this year or the beginning of 2015.
The new cars can increase passenger capacity by eight per cent per car and Montreal’s mayor hopes that will also translate into an increase in ridership.
“I’d like to take those ones, you’d like to try them too,” Montreal mayor Denis Coderre told reporters during a press conference, as he pointed toward the new car.
The entire system will cost $2.4 billion for the new cars, plus maintenance fees.
There are reports the new cars could use more energy than the existing ones.
“We don’t know precisely if there will be a higher consumption,” STM chairman Philippe Schnobb said.
Tests on the braking, ventilation, propulsion and noise levels still need to be conducted before the new state-of-the-art trains can roll for the first time.
But the futuristic cars have a lot of maintenance workers excited.
“The inside design and the outside design is amazing,” Martin Beauchamp, an STM mechanic who has already worked and driven the new AZUR trains.
© Shaw Media, 2014