New KTM train finally arrives (Update 2)

TRANSIT is happy to report that the newest KTM trainset has finally arrived in Malaysia.

TRANSIT received the photos below, showing the train’s departure from Korea. We have now learned that the train has arrived at WestPort (Port Klang) and will soon be handed over to KTMB.

Update 2 – TRANSIT has been invited to the handover ceremony at Kuala Lumpur station on 15 December

Update 1 – we have been informed that the train is now at KTMB’s workshop at Batu Gajah.

The train, made by the ROTEM Consortium, is 6-carriages in length and will be joined by 5 more trainsets by February of 2010.

KTMB hopes to operate the 1h 55m Express Train Service (ETS) between Ipoh and Seremban beginning in April 2010.

It is thought that there will be 2 services:

  • “Express”, Seremban-KL-Ipoh, RM60
  • “Transit”, Seremban, Kajang, KL, Sg. Buloh, Batu Gajah, Tg. Malim, Ipoh, RM40

In addition there is the current Seremban-KL-Ipoh train service which costs RM30 (or so)

TRANSIT Says:

We are of course happy to learn about the arrival of the new trains, but there are some details behind the trains that we are not exactly too happy about.

Firstly, the trains should have been ordered in 2005 so that they would be here and operating back in May 2007 when the KL-Ipoh Electrification and Double-Tracking project was completed.

Secondly, there should be more trains. 5 trains on the ETS service is simply not enough.

Thirdly, we are afraid that the RM60 fare for express service will result in low demand for the service.

Fourthly, KTMB needs to improve its Komuter division which is facing serious problems. Frankly, if these 5 trains were moved to operate on from Sg. Buloh to Kajang, it would have a major impact on congestion in KTM service.

Finally, KTMB is doing what it can to improve intercity train service but there is no coordination to improve public transport. Imagine what it will be like taking a fast train from KL-Ipoh or KL-Seremban (or the other way around) and then dealing with the aging buses and taxi mafia at the end of your trip!

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13 thoughts on “New KTM train finally arrives (Update 2)”

  1. I want to use ETS Train from Sg. Buloh – Batu Gajah and transit back from Batu Gajah – Sg. Buloh..how much it will cost me and can you please email to me the time table…Thank you very much

    I preferred to use train because it more conveniece to me

    1. Zetty

      Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, TRANSIT does not have the information about the ETS schedule or the cost of the service because nothing has been finalized as the service will only start in April 2010. However, we do have this image which shows the Route Map for the ETS Express and Transit services.

      However, we will email your request to KTMB and try to get feedback.

      In the meantime, KTMB does offer a shuttle train service between KL and Ipoh which may meet your needs. Visit ktmb.com.my for the schedule.

      Sincerely

      Moaz for TRANSIT

  2. I want to use ETS from KL to Batu Gajah. Where can I take ETS from KL and where will it stops at Batu Gajah?

    Is the service will starts on April 2010?

    1. Hi Li Mee

      The route for the ETS (Express Train Service) can be see in the image below.
      Route Map for Express Train Service (Express - red & Transit - blue)

      NOTE: click here to see a larger version of the image above.

      Both Express (red) and Transit (blue) services will stop at Batu Gajah Station. The station itself is the new station, located near the KTMB Workshop complex.

      Regarding the starting of the service in April 2010, we have to wait for KTMB to confirm the date.

      We have forwarded your question to KTMB and look forward to a detailed reply from them soon.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

    1. Blargh,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Actually, it is quite possible that the ETS service will replace the KTM Komuter service in the near future (e.g. by 2012-2013).

      We know now that ETS will offer both ‘Express’ trains and ‘Transit’ trains, similar to the KLIA Express / Transit combination. This is not really a surprise considering that Dr. Aminuddin, current Managing Director of KTMB, was formerly CEO of Express Rail Link Sdn. Bhd. which operates the rail link between KL Sentral and KLIA.

      TRANSIT also knows that the government plans to buy an additional 38-40 trainsets, each of 6 carriage EMUs.

      As the number of trains for ETS increases, they will probably expand the ‘Express’ and ‘Transit’ services both south and north.

      But there will still be a large number of trains that can be used for the KTM Komuter service and for limited stop peak hour trains for KTM Komuter.

      At some point, KTM Komuter will become more of a metro service, with additional in-between stops, while ETS will take over the Komuter portion of the service, with fewer stops at a greater distance apart.

      Regards,

      Moaz for TRANSIT

  3. Hi there,

    Any latest development on when this service will commence?

    I remember reading some articles mentioning that it is supposed to start running in March 2010 (during the opening of the new Ipoh train station as well as the launch of the ETS)?

    Thank you!

    1. Ray

      Thank you for your comment. We have no updated information and are assuming that the service will begin in late March or early April as planned.

      Our visit to the Batu Gajah depot showed us that there are 2 ETS trains at present undergoing load tests. I do not know where the other 3 are presently.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

    1. Hi Muru

      We are now hearing that the service will only start in June. There are still only 2 ETS trains in Malaysia and the other 3 out of the 5 still have to arrive and then be tested & commissioned.

      Our guess is that KTMB is waiting for June because it will give enough time for the trains to arrive, be tested and commissioned. Also, KTMB’s 125th anniversary is on June 1. Finally, we know that KTMB is having a problem with the Komuter trainsets – running out of spare parts – and have taken some trains out of service recently.

      Targeting June for ETS (and the Batu Caves extension, which is still having some signalling problems) will allow them to implement the service properly and comfortably.

      We are trying to get an official comment from KTMB regarding their plans but nothing has come so far.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

  4. Thank you Moaz, for your response.

    I am looking forward to 1st June (hopefully they won’t postpone again!) to fuel my son’s train obsession 🙂

    OT – do we have any train museums, or the like? Somewhere we can find out more about trains in Malaysia? (other than museum negara)

    Thank you again!

    1. Hi Ray

      There aren’t many train or transport museums in Malaysia, but there are small collections that can be seen.

      There is a mini museum at Kuala Lumpur station that has some old items used by KTMB including old uniforms, photos, train models, and a diorama of the old Sentul yard, among others.

      In Malacca there is a small collection of trains, planes and other items located near the Dataran Pahlawan Megamall (site of the old Padang).

      The Sarawak Museum in Kuching has a small display of posters from the Sarawak Government railway, which ran 13 miles inland from the Kuching Waterfront.

      May we suggest that you contact the KTM Railwayfan Club for more information about Railways in Malaysia, as well as past and future trips they have taken.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

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