New California Charger Clean Diesel-Electric Locomotives Debut

Last week, the State unveiled the its newest locomotives built by Siemens in California, for California. The Siemens Charger Clean Diesel-Electric Locomotives were built in in the Sacramento region and will be hitting the tracks in the coming days.

Photo Apr 18, 2 09 32 PM

These new locomotives are the first passenger locomotives to receive Tier IV emissions certification from the Federal Rail Administration utilizing green technology to meet the federal standards. These new locomotives will be able to reach speeds of 125 mph and are over 70% more emission-friendly than the locomotives they will replace.

“This is a great California story. We’re going to be moving people throughout the state of California in a much cleaner way and that’s an important part of all of our transportation investments,” said California State Transportation Agency Secretary Brian Kelly. “I couldn’t be more proud to say that this locomotive is both built and delivered here in California.”

The Charger locomotives will initially be used on two Northern California Amtrak routes: the Capitol Corridor and the San Joaquin. As more get delivered, they will also be utilized on the Pacific Surfliner route. The new locomotives also utilize state-of-the-art crash energy management features and are equipped with positive train control technology to further enhance safety.

“These Chargers will help provide California’s passenger rail services with a fleet of locomotives that meet very stringent emission standards,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty. “Not only will they make for a more sustainable transportation system, but are also expected to improve reliability and help efforts to double current statewide ridership of 5.4 million passengers by 2040.”

The first set, six in all for Northern California, are part of a larger, multi-state procurement. Siemens is building the Charger locomotives out of its nearly 1,000-person rail manufacturing hub in Sacramento, California for transportation agencies in California (Caltrans), Illinois (IDOT), Washington (WSDOT) and Maryland (MTA). Additional states served by the procurement are Oregon, Wisconsin, Missouri, Michigan and Iowa.

According to Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA) Managing Director, David Kutrosky, “These diesel-electric locomotives will result in a better overall experience for our passengers. They are cleaner and quieter, and offer a smoother ride. We’re excited to debut these Sacramento-built Tier 4 engines on the Capitol Corridor.”

Soon, riders on the Capitol Corridor line can jump on a train powered by one of these cleaner locomotives and enjoy the ride. For more information about the Capitol Corridor: