Last week, London unveiled the new cars to the public for the first time, and when the trains finally hit the tracks starting in the mid-2020s, they’ll bring an appreciable list of improvements to riders.
With the new design, you’ll be able to walk the entire length of the train, which frees up lots of space that was wasted just from closing off individual cars in the past. The entrances are now all evenly spaced and feature double-wide doors, which means it should be a lot faster to get on and off the trains. And you won’t have to “mind the gap” anymore: the cars are all shorter, which makes the trains more flexible and able to come much closer to the platform edge.
There are smaller improvements, too, like strips of LED lights along the doors that clearly flash red to warn passengers as they’re about to close. In addition, all of the advertising and signage on the cars will use digital screens instead of paper inserts, and some of the deepest lines in London will get air conditioning for the first time with the new cars. And did we mention that there will be Wi-Fi on board? Perhaps most importantly, the new trains will be future proofed to run entirely operator-free (though they’ll be staffed for the foreseeable future).
A train for 2020s-2060s and beyond
- 250 new Tube trains for the Bakerloo, Central, Piccadilly and Waterloo & City lines
- Walk-through carriages helping to ease extra demand at peak times
- Air-cooled carriages for a more comfortable journey
- More reliability as modern signalling systems will ensure fewer delays
- More capacity with a faster, more frequent service
- Improved accessibility with step-free access at platform level
The improvements are certainly good news for London residents, but when it comes down to it, the new trains just look like they belong in the future. The only part that seems firmly rooted in the past is the interior, which retains the Tube’s classic fabric seating. Take a look for yourself below.