Via Rail unveils a new fleet of trains for the Windsor-Quebec corridor


OTTAWA – By the end of next year, your train ride to Toronto or Montreal could be much more comfortable.

Via Rail previewed the first of 32 new Siemens trains on Tuesday at its Tremblay Road station in Ottawa.

“Canadians’ journeys will never be the same again,” says Martin Landry, Via Rail’s commercial director.

Trains will be used on the Windsor-Quebec corridor, serving destinations such as Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto. Some of the new and improved train features include:

  • wider aisles;

  • adjustable table tops;

  • more comfortable headrests;

  • automatic interior doors without contact; and

  • high speed reliable wifi.

New Via Rail trains

Ottawa South Liberal MP David McGuintyn was in attendance at the premiere and said, “I can tell you they will deliver a new era of comfort and efficiency for workers, families and families. tourists who travel on these trails. “

Passengers are expected to board the new trains by the end of 2022.

Winter testing will begin overnight on the track in Ottawa. The teams will test the new train and its advanced technology in difficult conditions such as snow and extreme cold.

Landry says the Canadian winter poses a challenge for trains. “The train could start in Windsor with rain, arrive in Toronto with freezing rain and by the time it gets to Quebec, it’s a snowstorm… these conditions are really trying. We want to go through the full winter test until spring.

Trains are also fully accessible, and each includes onboard wheelchair lifts, large accessible toilets, braille, and signage.

Via Rail says trains are among the most environmentally friendly intercity fleets in North America. They include diesel engines and are bidirectional.

New Via Rail trains

McGuinty says, “These two-way trains can run in both directions, which will save time and reduce delays. “

Cynthia Garneau, President and CEO of VIA Rail, says making sure trains are environmentally friendly was a priority and that they will continue to find ways to reduce the environmental footprint.

“We will be able to reduce waste in our trains, so we will do pilot projects and put them in place all along the corridor,” she said.

Garneau adds that the new fleet “marks a new era for passenger rail service in the corridor, where we served more than 4.7 million passengers in 2019 and who represented 96% of our ridership before the pandemic”.


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