News & Reviews News Wire Montreal’s Exo begins placing new CRRC-built commuter cars in service

Montreal’s Exo begins placing new CRRC-built commuter cars in service

By Trains Staff | June 25, 2024

Bilevel cars will operate on Saint-Jérôme line

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Blue and silver locomotive with white trim pulling six cars of bilevel passenger equipment past signal bridge
F59PH No. 1342 leads an Exo test run of new CRRC coaches at Montreal West on March 15, 2024. The new cars are new being placed in service. Michael Berry

MONTREAL — Commuter operator Exo is set to begin operating 44 new bilevel railcars built by China’s CRRC on its Saint-Jérôme line today (Tuesday, June 25).

At least one set of the cars, part of a C$204 million order, was reportedly in service as of last Friday, June 21. The original 24-car order was modified by Exo’s parent agency several months after it was placed; the agency subsequently exercised an option for 20 additional cars. The order includes eight cab cars and 36 trailers. Exo touts features including seating for up to 147; increased electrical and USB outlets; accessible restrooms with diaper-changing tables; wider doors; and a number of accessibility features that meet Americans with Disability Act requirements.

“We are really proud of that new rolling stock,” Exo CEO Sylvain Yelle told Global News. And while CRRC projects in the United States have been marked by missed deadlines and quality-control issues, Yelle says the new equipment has undergone extensive testing: “Our technical staff are really confident about that material,” he said.

Deliveries of the cars were supposed to begin in 2019, but the modifications, COVID-19 pandemic, and a desire to increase the amount of Canadian content in the equipment contributed to delays that pushed back the first deliveries to 2022. One of the first new cars was damaged in a delivery accident when it hit the superstructure of a former CN lift bridge over Montreal’s Lachine Canal [see “New Montreal commuter car damaged …,” Trains News Wire, Feb. 15, 2022].

Exo operates a five-line, 140-mile network, but the new equipment is being limited to the 39-mile, 14-station Saint-Jérôme line, the system’s busiest

5 thoughts on “Montreal’s Exo begins placing new CRRC-built commuter cars in service

  1. Where are these being manufactured? Not Springfield I assume. Are they being imported directly from China?

  2. So instead of having two types of multilevel cars in service now they have three! Brilliant!

  3. Why would rolling stock being placed in service in Canada have features that meet the US ADA requirements when Quebec has their own act?

    1. A lot of Canadian railroad regs are block copied from American regs. It’s simpler to let some other schlub do the grunt work.

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