Klang Valley, the metropolitan region around Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur, is home to around four million people. In order to strengthen the appeal of this fast growing region and to prepare for the urban transit challenges of the future, Kuala Lumpur will rely on the Metro Inspiro by German train manufacturer Siemens.
Being built by Mass Rapid Transit Corporation, a total of 58 trains are expected to be in service as of 2017 on one of the most frequented lines of the city. BMW Group subsidiary DesignworksUSA created the design for the new underground passenger trains.
Cultural identity was a key driver in the design development of the new trains, say the designers. The cityscape of Kuala Lumpur is characterised by a mixture of cultures and religions, which is manifested in the city’s architecture. Under the name “Guiding Light” the design of the Metro Inspiro therefore aims to take a bow to the architectural heritage of Kuala Lumpur.
“The exterior design is a bold statement of dynamism and strength. It symbolises self confidence, technological leadership, progress and safety,” says Laurenz Schaffer, President of BMW Group DesignworksUSA.
When operational a total of 58 driverless trains will be in service allowing a frequency of one train every 3.5 minutes during peak hours. Each four-car trainset will have a capacity of 1200 passengers improving the daily ridership target of the operator. The train design also takes into consideration the needs of disabled people: Six specific areas in each train are equipped with hand-rails which offer space to allow wheelchair-bound passengers to be seated in their rides. The doors will emit a beeping sound and light to guide disabled passengers when the train doors are closing and opening.
Siemens also says the trains, which have a 30-year life-cycle, are approximately 95 per cent recyclable. They consist of light weight stainless steel car bodies, weight-optimised components and employ air conditioning and lighting systems which reduce energy costs. The trains have high-efficiency traction and train control systems and due to large wheel diameters they will be quieter than their predecessors, claims Siemens.
Source: BMW DesignworksUSA