New BART Trains to be designed by BMW


Let’s also aim for longer hours of operation! No? Yes? Maybe?

via The Bay Citizen

Will the new BART trains have heated leather seats? Probably not, but luxury carmaker BMW has been chosen to design the outside and inside of BART’s new fleet of trains set to roll down the tracks, the company announced in a press release Monday. To be exact, DesignworksUSA, a subsidiary of BMW will be doing the design work.

But the new trains are still not a guarantee because, thanks to Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget cuts, BART doesn’t have all the money it needs to buy them. BART has about $850 million coming from the federal government to buy the first 200 new cars. But the transit agency was supposed to come up with $150 million in matching funds.

BART had been counting on $150 million coming from the state. Now the agency will have to scramble to find another source. BART board President Bob Franklin said it’s possible the agency will use money meant for modernizing BART stations to make up the difference. Either way, BART was supposed to put the order in for the new cars in December. With the funding problems, Franklin said it could slip to the spring.

The new cars will include new seats — possibly easily cleaned plastic ones — that BART riders have been coveting for years.

The BMW contract is worth about $500,000, according to Jim Allison, a BART spokesman. BMW said in its press release that the exterior of the new cars will “will convey a style and shape with unique signature expression to the exterior passenger information system.” Whatever that means.

Source: The Bay Citizen (







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