A total of 14 new Siemens Charger locomotives are now operational on Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner route, which carries nearly three million passengers a year to top destinations from San Diego to San Luis Obispo. The locomotives were originally unveiled by the Los Angeles — San Diego — San Luis Obispo Rail Corridor Agency and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) in October 2018.
The new Charger locomotive is the first passenger locomotive to receive the stringent Tier IV emissions certification from the Environmental Protection Agency, making it one of the cleanest diesel-electric passenger locomotives in operation today. The state-of-the-art locomotive, manufactured at Siemens’ solar-powered plant in Sacramento, California, now powers the majority of 24 daily Pacific Surfliner trains traveling through Southern California.
Almost 90% cleaner than the locomotives they replaced, the Charger locomotives allow the Pacific Surfliner service to meet growing demand for ridership while providing quieter, more efficient passenger rail service that helps relieve congestion on adjacent freeways like Interstate 5 and U.S. 101.
Siemens built the Charger locomotives for transportation agencies across the U.S. as part of a multi-state procurement project. The 14 Charger locomotives used on Pacific Surfliner service were funded by Caltrans with approximately $100 million in state, federal, and local funds, and replaced Amtrak-owned locomotives which were nearly 20 years old.