First of 52 new commuter trains to arrive in Taiwan Saturday

Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) is preparing to take delivery of the first shipment of new EMU900 local service trains which are expected to arrive October 24.

Built in Korea by Hyundai Rotem, the trains are being touted as a big improvement in local train services.

With a total cost of NT$25.3 billion (US$873 million), TRA has ordered 52 trains at 10 cars per train. The first 20 cars will arrive at the Port of Hualien, Saturday.

The EMU900 will gradually replace the older EMU700 and EMU800 trains. The EMU700 and EMU800 have a configuration of eight cars per train. It is estimated that the EMU900 will increase capacity by 40%.

Improvements on older models include an increased capacity for wheelchairs and bicycles. The EMU800 has four wheelchair positions and capacity for eight bicycles, while the EMU900 can carry eight wheelchairs and 16 bicycles.

Although the number of toilets has been reduced from four per eight cars to three per ten, the toilets are all pedestal types, and there are no squat toilets.

The EMU900s are fitted with video displays, video monitoring systems, and automatic lighting brightness controls.

All 52 trains are expected to be delivered in batches by 2024.

interior of EMU900 commuter train car
Train interior with upright bicycle racks.
bicycle on upright bicycle rack
wheelchair area on EMU900
One of eight wheelchair positions on EMU900
toilet on EMU900
Three toilets per train: no squat toilets.
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