USA: Amtrak has issued a request for information seeking to explore options for ‘all types of rail vehicles including coach cars, trainsets and self-propelled units’ that could eventually replace its Amfleet I coaches.

The single-deck coaches supplied by Budd in the 1970s are used primarily on shorter-distance routes east of the Mississippi, including the Northeast Corridor.

Requests to participate in the RFI should be submitted by July 11. The closing date for responses is October 11. Following a review of what manufacturers can offer, Amtrak plans to issue a request for proposals in 2019.

‘New equipment will provide our customers with a more modern experience, while improving ride quality and reliability’, said Byron Comati, Amtrak Vice-President of Corporate Planning, on June 27. ‘Although the Amfleet I fleet has recently undergone a refresh programme that has replaced many interior elements of the vehicles, including seats, carpets and lighting features, the cars are about 40 years old and are at the point where replacement is more cost-effective than maintenance.’