Hotline #665-A

Bombardier and Amtrak, at long last yesterday, announced an order for 140 Superliners. For $350 million -- or about $2.5 million apiece -- Amtrak will get six deluxe sleepers for the Auto Train, 49 standard sleepers, 38 coaches, 20 diners, 15 lounges, and 12 transition dorms, plus an option to purchase 39 more cars at the same unit price. The cars are patterned after the original Pullman Standard Superliners delivered between 1979 and 1981, for which Bombardier holds all patents. Amtrak still has 282 of them. The new cars will all have full-retention toilets, as required by law. They will be delivered between July 1993 and January 1996 for the Auto Train, Capitol Limited, and City of New Orleans, and for increasing capacity on western trains.

Earlier, Amtrak had indicated that any new service, such as to Oklahoma, would have to wait for cars from the contract option. Amtrak has not said whether the Cardinal and Sunset Limited can be made daily on this order. Amtrak does plan to order single-level Viewliners in 1992.