Nippon Sharyo FRA DMU

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Nippon Sharyo DMU
Union Pearson Express 1002-a.jpg
"A" Car
Years of manufacture 2013-present
Length 85 feet
Width 10 feet 5.2 inches
Height 14 feet 7.5 inches
Power/Fuel Diesel
Union Pearson Express 3001-a.jpg
"C" Car

Nippon Sharyo USA has supplied 32 diesel multiple units (DMUs), which meet the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) standards, to the Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit District (SMART) and Metrolinx beginning in 2014. These cars are allowed to operate on tracks shared with mainline rail vehicles.


The 85-foot long cars feature a sloped front with cab and are intended to be coupled back-to-back with another unit. Another car with a flat cab end can be placed between the two in order to add capacity.

In addition to meeting the FRA standards for buff strength, the cars feature crash energy management (CEM) systems. One of these CEM features is crumple zones at the ends of each car. These areas are designed to deform and absorb forces in a collision. Another feature is push-back couplers.

Each car is powered by a 760 horsepower Cummins QSK19-R diesel engine located under the floor. The QSK19-R is designed to meet the EPA Tier 4 emissions levels.[1] In addition, the engine is compatible with B20 biodiesel. The car is designed to be able to be converted to an electric multiple unit. This involves the removal of the diesel power pack, radiator, and axle drives, followed by the installation of a pantograph, resistors, and traction motors.[2]


After years of study and analysis, the Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit District (SMART) concluded that FRA-compliant DMUs would be best suited for the service. The SMART Board issued a request for proposals in April 2010. Proposals were received from CAF, Sumitomo Corporation of America (Nippon Sharyo), Siemens, Stadler, and US Rail Car. Firms were also allowed to submit non-FRA compliant proposals. Siemens had submitted an FRA-compliant design along with the non-compliant Desiro design. Stadler had only submitted the non-compliant GTW design.

Sumitomo's proposal had scored best and it was recommended that the SMART Board award them the contract. The SMART Board placed a base order for 18 (later reduced to 14) DMUs in December 2010. The contract includes options for 146 more units.[3]

In February 2011, Metrolinx joined the competitively tendered order by SMART. Metrolinx ordered 12 DMUs for use on the Union Pearson Express which links Toronto's downtown to the airport.[4] The option for six additional DMUs was taken in October 2011 and allows for six 3-car trains. [5]

The DMUs begin construction at Nippon Sharyo's Toyokawa facility in Japan. Final assembly takes place at the expanded Rochelle facility in the United States. The first two cars built for SMART were shipped to the United States at the end of spring 2014 followed by those for Metrolinx in the summer. Metrolinx's cars entered service on the Union Pearson Express in June 2015, while SMART's entered service in late August 2016.