News & Reviews News Wire Amtrak finalizes order for additional Charger locomotives

Amtrak finalizes order for additional Charger locomotives

By | June 23, 2022

Purchase of 50 ALC42s was originally reported in February

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Black locomotive with blue and white stripes leads passenger train
Siemens ALC42 No. 301, in the “Day One” heritage paint scheme, leads the eastbound Empire Builder through Elm Grove, Wis., on March 24, 2022. (Trains: David Lassen)

WASHINGTON — Amtrak has finalized an order for 50 additional Siemens Charger locomotives for long-distance passenger service.

The deal was originally reported by Trains News Wire in February [see “Amtrak to order 50 more …,” News Wire, Feb. 8, 2022].

The latest order will bring to 125 the number of ALC42 locomotives purchased by Amtrak. (The model number is a designation for Amtrak Long-distance Charger, 4,200 hp). The locomotives will replace GE P40 locomotives first delivered in 1993, and P42 units, the oldest of which dates to 1996.

In total, the locomotive order is worth up to $2 billion. The first of the locomotives have been placed into service on the Empire Builder; the City of New Orleans will be the next to receive them. More details are available in an Amtrak press release.

15 thoughts on “Amtrak finalizes order for additional Charger locomotives

  1. On the cold and humid Tuesday afternoon, February 8, 2022, two sleek Siemens Mobility ALC-42 locomotives led the Empire Builder west out of Chicago. It was the very first time the new passenger units had been officially used in revenue service. And that was the beginning of another contemporary diesel traction era in Amtrak’s more than three color history!

    The Siemens Charger is a family of powerful and fast [with a top speed of 125 mph (201 km/h)] diesel-electric passenger locomotives designed and built by Siemens Mobility for the North American market. There are five variants of the Charger: the SC-44, the SCB-40, the SC-42, ALC-42, and the ALC-42E. As the most energy-efficient Tier 4 passenger locomotive in the industry, the model is derived from the European Siemens Vectron base.

    All 125 units of the the ALC-42 locomotives are being manufactured at Siemens Mobility’s North American rail manufacturing facility in Sacramento – California and comply with the Federal Railroad Administration Buy America Standards. The plant is one of the largest of its kind on the continent, and one of the most sustainable, using a 2.1 MWp solar panel installation to generate much of its power from the abundant California sun. It is part of Siemens Mobility’s larger U.S. manufacturing network, with eight facilities, more than 4000 employees and 2000 American suppliers, including Cummins, which manufactures the Tier-4 complaint diesel engines in Seymour – Indiana.

    Dr. Güntürk Üstün

  2. sorry to see the Genesis being replaced by Chargers on long distance amtrak trains but I’ll get use to the chargers they are pretty sleek as the genesis

  3. They had best get those designs for new superliners soon even if they have to do it in crayon & start getting bids because that generous funding they received for new equipment if left unspent could very well get clawed back & repurpose in the next year or two and the current superliners are not going to last much longer it will just be another excuse to eliminate the western LD service…but maybe that’s what their hoping.

  4. Alstom is going to produce a bi-level for Metra based on the Coradia, so that market is not dead.

    Siemens also announced their Surfliner bilevels for Caltrans.

    US Railcar has a bilevel DMU in their catalog.

    Congrats to Siemens and Cummins for creating a great combination in the Charger.

    1. Didn’t US Rail car go out of business or am I thinking of Colorado Railcar.

    2. Colorado Railcar went out of business. I think US Railcar is the successor.

    3. “Siemens also announced their Surfliner bilevels for Caltrans.” Citation, please.

  5. While I agree that Superliners are a perfect design for the long-distance trains, I wonder if there are any builders willing to take on building them. Seems like they might be a bit gun-shy after the failure of the new double-deck corridor car build by Nippon Sharyo. That order cancellation was replaced by single-level Siemens cars.
    If Amtrak does eventually go with a single-level design for new long-distance cars there would be a possibility of some sort of dome being built, but in today’s world I would think that would be a long shot.

  6. How about more Siemans cars for single level long distance?
    All Amfleet 1 and 2’s obsolete and need replacing. Siemans cars now seem to be the “standard” passenger car.
    PS I live in C. FL. I’ll hopefully be on the first ORL/MIA Brightline train soon.

    1. As I stated in an earlier post, Viewliners are more appealing for long distance cars. Bigger bodies and more windows. I’d like to see Viewliner coaches and lounge cars.
      For the western trains Superliners are the way to go. Although I like the Viewliner design, if the Empire Builder got Viewliner cars, it would have to be an 18 car train which no platform could support.

    1. Brian, A design for new cars is in the works, but it won’t be ready to build for at least another five years.

    2. What’s wrong with the Superliner or Viewliner design? We don’t have five years to wait for a new design.

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