Amtrak is the national intercity train network in the United States. Amtrak operates more than 300 trains in 46 states and three Canadian provinces over 21,300 miles of track each day. Most of Amtrak’s ridership is concentrated in the Northeast Corridor (Washington, DC-New York City-Boston), where the Acela Express high speed train runs at speeds of up to 150 MPH while in revenue service. A network of 15 long distance routes criscrossing the country, while not the most expedient way to get somewhere, provide for a remarkable travel experience and way to see the country that cannot be matched when one travels by car or airplane. These trains have sleeping cars, a full service dining car, and an observation car with floor to ceiling windows.
The Acela Express is Amtrak's premium service in the Northeast Corridor and North America's fastest passenger train. A Bombardier Alstom consortium built 20 trainsets at a cost of $800 million. Each trainset has two power cars, a first class car, four business class cars, and a cafe car. Acela Express entered revenue service on December 11, 2000. It operates at speeds of up to 150 MPH and has tilting technology to improve passenger comfort as the train goes through curves.
Amtrak ordered fifteen HHP-8 locomotives in 1999. These engines featured 8,000 horsepower engines, making them the most powerful in Amtrak's fleet. However, they were plagued with mechanical issues throughout their history and retired in November 2014 after just 15 years in revenue service.
Amtrak has three types of Genesis diesel locomotives, all of which were built by GE. The P40DC and P42DC are diesel locomotives used on Amtrak services throughout the country, with the exception of services to and from New York-Penn Station, where diesel locomotives are not permitted. The P32AC-DM is a dual-power locomotive that can operate using diesel power or electric power from a third rail, and as a result, is able to operate in to New York-Penn Station.
Amtrak's Amfleet Passenger cars are found throughout much of the railroad's network. They come in coach class, business class, and cafe car configurations and are used on both short distance and long distance trains in the Northeast and Midwest. They also occasionally run in California. These cars have been in service since 1975.
Amtrak's Superliner passenger cars are bi-level cars that operate on long distance services west of Chicago, as well as the Capitol Limited (Chicago-Washington) and Auto Train (Lorton-Sanford). These cars were built in sleeper, coach, diner, and lounge configurations. An additional configuration, the "transition-do", provides sleeping quarters for the train's crew as well as a vestibule to allow passage to a single level car, such as a locomotive or baggage car.
The "California Cars" were initially manufactured in 1996. These double-decker passenger coaches are modeled after the Superliner coaches, but modified to make them suitable for use on corridor services with frequent stops. They initially debuted on the San Diegan (now the Pacific Surfliner) but currently operate on the Capitol Corridor and San Joaquin services.