August sees the official launch of the new S stock trains on the Met Line. The first is expected to go into service in September, with the second a month or so later, and thereafter at approximately two-week intervals. The whole fleet is expected to be in operation within about 15 months from now.
The advantages of the trains include:
- Full air conditioning
- Easy access, walkthrough carriages and wheelchair spaces
- Improved safety with CCTV
- Improved on-board passenger information
- More space in general
The two main downsides are:
- Much smaller seating capacity (about 30% fewer seats)
- We are stuck with the old signalling for at least five years
In theory the new trains are able to go faster, but new signalling has to be in place for this to happen and, as yet, the contract has not been signed, and there is a real concern that budget cuts might delay it even further. When the new signalling is in operation, it will be possible to run more trains per hour which would help make up for the lack of seating.
We would very much like to hear your views about the new trains. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org