San Carlos, California’s Caltrain received its third and fourth electric trainsets at the Centralized Equipment and Maintenance Facility (CEMOF) in San Jose. The trains will go into service in 2024, and until then, will be tested to ensure they and the infrastructure they will rely upon are in good working order.
The new high-performance trains, known as Electrical Multiple Units (EMUs), will offer a better service to Caltrain riders. Each trainset will have seven cars, as opposed to the current five or six. EMUs also accelerate and decelerate faster than diesel trains, which must be pulled by a locomotive. These electric motors also generate much less noise than their diesel equivalent, making the trip more enjoyable both for riders and residents that live near Caltrain tracks. The EMUs also offer enhanced amenities, including new digital onboard displays, power outlets at each forward-facing seat, a new seat color palette selected by the public, energy-efficient lighting, coat hooks, security cameras, and expanded storage under the cantilevered seats.
The EMUs were built by Stadler US at their facility in Salt Lake City, Utah. After the EMUs were assembled, they were sent to a test facility in Pueblo, Colo., where they were tested at high speeds as required by the Federal Railroad Administration.
Those interested in seeing more of the EMUs can take a virtual tour, which Caltrain launched in October 2020.
The Caltrain Electrification project will electrify the corridor from the San Francisco Station at 4th and King Streets to approximately the Tamien Station in San Jose, replacing diesel-hauled trains with electric trains. Electrification will improve Caltrain’s system performance, enable more frequent and/or faster train service, and minimize long-term environmental impact by reducing noise, improving regional air quality and decreasing greenhouse gas emissions.