These electric trains will replace Amtrak's older trains that have been in use for 20-30 years, as well as provide 250 manufacturing jobs in the U.S. as they will be built in Siemens' manufacturing facilities in California (at their solar energy-powered plant) and Georgia.
"Amtrak’s order for 70 new electric locomotives will not only create new manufacturing jobs, it supports the Department of Transportation’s strategy to use transportation to build the infrastructure needed to support a modern growing economy, while helping make our cities more livable, improve the environment and reduce our dependence on foreign oil," said Joseph C. Szabo, Federal Railroad Administrator, in a statement on Earth Techling.
Earth Techling also reports that the Sprinter ACS-64 models, "...likely will operate at speeds up to 125 mph (201 kph) on the Northeast Corridor from Washington, D.C. to Boston and up to 110 mph (177 kph) on the Keystone Corridor from Philadelphia to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania."
The DOT reports that these electric trains are in their final design phase and will debut in 2013.
Amtrak receives funding from DOT for 70 electric trains (video)
Last October, Amtrak announced their proposal to purchase 70 Sprinter ACS-64 electric locomotives from Siemens to use in their Northeast and Keystone Corridor lines. This past week, it was revealed that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) will be giving Amtrak a $562 million loan under the Federal Railroad Administration’s Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) program to help get them on their way.